Union Man Charged In Fatal Collision

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UNION – A Union man surrendered to state police on Tuesday and was charged in connection with a hit-and-run crash that killed one man and injured two others on Friday, Dec. 18, authorities said.

Jose Beltran, 49, was charged with leaving the scene of a fatal motor vehicle accident, leaving the scene of a motor vehicle accident involving serious bodily injury and three counts of endangering an injured victim. Beltran is free on $100,000 bail with a 10% option.


The vehicle Beltran was driving, a 2002 black Lincoln Navigator, matched the description that State Police detectives put out to the media last Friday afternoon.  Beltran told detectives that the vehicle belongs to a friend. Troopers recovered that Navigator Tuesday after Beltran had contacted detectives to reveal its location.  Troopers had it towed to Totowa station where it was impounded and processed.

The initial crash occurred at about 4 a.m. last Friday morning when three men were outside of their 1992 Honda Accord fixing a flat tire when the Navigator driven by Beltran struck all three men, authorities said.  Ricci Chicas, 21, of Garfield was killed, Shannel Diaz, 21, of North Bergen received a shoulder injury and was taken to University Hospital in Newark.  Jonathan Mentor, 20, of North Bergen received minor injuries.

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