Toms River woman, 71, dies in hit-and-run crash

by Anthony Abramson
(riverview florida usa )

Jean Mc.Carthy

Jean Mc.Carthy

TOMS RIVER — A 71-year-old township woman has died following injuries sustained in a Saturday night hit-and-and-run accident along Route 70, police said.

The accident was the second incident, a quarter-mile apart, involving the Camino Verde resident, Toms River police Chief Michael Mastronardy said.

The woman, identified Sunday morning as Jean McCarthy, was a passenger in a pickup truck driven by her husband Ed McCarthy, 74, who remains in serious condition Sunday afternoon at Jersey Shore University Medical Center in Neptune, Mastronardy said.

Coincidentally, the couple was traveling along Route 70 west from an earlier minor accident at the intersections of Route 9 and 70 when their vehicle was struck head-on by a van making a left turn onto Massachusetts Avenue from Route 70 east.

The driver of that vehicle, Abel Hernandez, 28, of North Oak Avenue in Lakewood, attempted to flee the scene on foot but was soon captured. Hernandez was uninjured.

Hernandez was held at Ocean County Jail in lieu of $175,000 bail set by Judge James Blaney, and on a detain order from ICE due to his illegal citizen status, Mastronardy said. No photo of the suspect was available through the police department.

Hernandez is being charged with unlicensed driving, reckless driving, death by auto, leaving the scene of an accident involving an injury, and driving under the influence, along with other motor vehicle charges, Mastronardy said.

“Mr. Hernandez fled the van after the accident, but was apprehended within an hour of the accident on Massachusetts Avenue by Lakewood Officer Ed Vega,” Mastronardy said. “Officer Art Pennell and a Sheriff Department’s canine were also brought to the scene to track the driver.”

The accident happened when Hernandez attempted to turn from Route 70 east onto northbound Massachusetts Avenue, Mastronardy said. Following the crash, the uninjured Hernandez jumped out of his vehicle, attempting to flee, but was captured along Massachusetts Avenue. The incident caused a three-hour closure of Route 70 westbound.Jean McCarthy was pronounced dead at Kimball Medical Center in Lakewood. Her husband was airlifted to Jersey Shore University Medical Center’s trauma center.

The New Jersey Department of Transportation assisted in traffic control and neighboring police and fire departments provided assistance. Pleasant Plains Fire Company handled Jean McCarthy’s extrication from the van, with assistance from Ridgeway and Manchester fire companies. Toms River Police EMS and Silverton First Aid Squad also assisted.

Toms River Police Department Traffic Safety Patrolman Steven Schwartz is investigating in conjunction with the Ocean County Sheriff’s Office and the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office.

During the earlier minor accident, Mrs. McCarthy struck the rear of a car being operated by a 73-year-old Manchester woman who had been slowing down for traffic, Mastronardy said. No one was injured in that incident and McCarthy’s husband had just come to the scene to drive his wife to their residence a mile down the road.

That accident is being investigated by Officer Ryan Quinn.

Anyone with information pertaining to the fatal crash can contact Toms River Traffic Safety officer Steven Schwartz at 349-0150 ext. 1293 or the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office at 929-2027.

Click here to post comments

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to The Drunk Driving Victim Memorial.

Stay Safe with a Breathalyzer - Shop Now!