Updated 02/27/2012 10:15 AM
Police locate driver involved in deadly hit and run
Albany police have found the driver they say was involved in a fatal hit and run this weekend. Our Matt Hunter has the latest.
To view our videos, you need to
install Adobe Flash 9 or above. Install now.
Then come back here and refresh the page.
ALBANY, NY – "He was happy the whole time, for the three years I knew him, he was real, real happy," said Mark Carter, owner of Taysha Florist in Albany.
In the few years since Rozell Whitehead was released from state prison, friends say the 53-year-old had turned his life around. On and off, he performed odd jobs for Carter at the flower shop.
Shortly after 7:30 Saturday evening, that life came to a hault when Whitehead was hit by a car while crossing Henry Johnson Boulevard, just a few steps away from Carter’s store.
"A good friend passed away, a real good friend," Carter said Sunday.
According to Albany Police, Whitehead was hit by a car heading south on Henry Johnson Boulevard.
While Whitehead was taken to Albany Med where he later died, police say the driver of the vehicle never stopped.
"I don't think there's any question at this point that they thought they hit anything else other than a person, I don't think there's any question,” Albany Police Department Spokesperson James Miller said. “Particularly because it's well lit, so I can't imagine that you wouldn't know you hit a human being."
Police were still reconstructing the accident scene Sunday morning, working to determine if speed and alcohol may have been factors.
By that time, officers say they had located who they believe is the driver and their vehicle; though as of Sunday evening, no arrest had been made.
"No formal charges,” Miller said. “Obviously it's still early in the investigation and we're sorting that part out."
Meanwhile, a heartbroken neighborhood is still trying to make sense of the tragedy that occurred and honor the life lost.
"[He was] a real good dude, a real good dude,” Carter said. “Reliable. You'd be like, ‘I need some help man, I've got to go cut some wood down in the woods or something. ‘Come on, let's go!’ Unbelievable man."