Ju­ve­nile charged with hit-and-run death by auto

The Trentonian (Trenton, NJ) - - FRONT PAGE - By Su­laiman Ab­dur-Rah­man Su­laiman@21st-cen­tu­ry­media.com @sab­durr on Twit­ter Staff writer Penny Ray con­tributed to this report.

TREN­TON » A 17-year-old un­li­censed driver has been ar­rested in con­nec­tion with the March 7 hit-and-run homi­cide of 39-yearold Lea Pringle.

The teenage city girl was charged Thurs­day with death by auto and re­lated of­fenses and re­manded to the Mid­dle­sex County Ju­ve­nile De­ten­tion Cen­ter, ac­cord­ing to Tren­ton Po­lice, who said the Mercer County Prose­cu­tor’s Of­fice will de­ter­mine whether the de­fen­dant is tried as a ju­ve­nile or an adult.

The un­li­censed teen driver is ac­cused of strik­ing the pedes­trian about 12:30 a.m. March 7 in the 600 block of North Olden Av­enue, just out­side of Benny’s bar. Pringle later died at the hospi­tal. She was a Bucks County res­i­dent of Yardley, Penn­syl­va­nia.

Tren­ton Po­lice De­tec­tive Craig Kirk and De­tec­tive Sgt. Bethesda Stokes are the in­ves­ti­gat­ing of­fi­cers who solved the fatal hit-and-run case.

Ac­cord­ing to the New Jersey State Po­lice Uni­form Crime Re­port­ing Unit, ve­hic­u­lar homi­cides are con­sid­ered man­slaugh­ter and are, there­fore, not re­ported as a homi­cide statis­tic. The Tren­to­nian, how­ever, in­cludes death by auto and jus­ti­fi­able po­lice shoot­ings in its yearly homi­cide count.

The area where Pringle was struck is said to be rife with reck­less or care­less driv­ers who speed through the city’s East Tren­ton neigh­bor­hood. Sev­eral hours af­ter the ve­hic­u­lar homi­cide in­ci­dent oc­curred, a man who iden­ti­fied him­self as the man­ager of Benny’s said mo­torists con­tin­u­ally speed through the area, which con­sists of res­i­den­tial hous­ing on both sides of the street, and reg­u­larly has sev­eral cars parked out­side of homes.

A city woman, Ivelisse Bas­sat, was ar­rested ear­lier this year on al­le­ga­tions she reck­lessly crashed into a pedes­trian while driv­ing drunk on the 600 block of North Olden Av­enue. The 30-year-old male vic­tim was struck about 2 a.m. March 5. The crash pinned the vic­tim be­tween two ve­hi­cles near Benny’s bar, caus­ing his leg to be sev­ered from his body. He suf­fered ma­jor in­juries but sur­vived.

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