Family of man killed in hit-and-run seek justice

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SALT LAKE CITY — The family of man killed in a hit-and-run accident are pleading for help in finding the driver of the car.

The grieving family is waiting for answers about the crash that killed Genaro Zaragosa-Valencia, 73, at 1680 South 1000 West.

"We are very sad from what happened. Very sad. We feel very bad," said Zaragosa's sister-in-law, Magdalena Izarraraz. "Walking back from the store and out of the blue, a car appears."

Witnesses said a speeding car going south on 1000 West hit Zaragosa as he crossed the dark street, and carried him 75 feet. After the accident, the man's belongings were scattered on the street along with key pieces of evidence that would allow investigators to figure out what kind of car was involved.

On Wednesday, Salt Lake City police released more information about the vehicle which has extensive front-end damage and possible damage on the passenger side.


"A 2002 or 2003 BMW 3 series. It's going to be either the convertible or coupe model, silver in color," said Salt Lake City Police Sgt. Robin Heiden.

Zaragosa was critically injured when he was transported to an area hospital. His wife and children were with him at the hospital Tuesday when doctors took him off life support.

"He never got better, just worse and worse until he died," Izarraraz said.

Zaragosa's sister-in-law said the driver needs to be held accountable.

"We want them to pay because if this happens to another person, this is not good. Pay for their acts — very bad. All that we ask," Izarraraz said.

She said Zaragosa, who immigrated to Utah from Mexico 40 years ago, was a familiar face in the neighborhood.

"When he walked outside, he knew everybody and talked to everybody," Izarraraz said.

She said Zaragosa and his wife always went to the nearby 7-Eleven together. On Monday, he went alone. Zaragosa was almost back home, when he was hit.

"He was a very good man, lived well. What he could give to others, he gave. He would bring people here, his friends, and gave them food," Izarraraz said.

Anyone with information on the case can call Salt Lake City Police at 801-799-3000.


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