NEW BRITAIN — A Berlin man has pleaded not guilty to evading responsibility in connection with a hit and run that killed a homeless woman in October.
Emanuel Story, 31, of 266 Brooke Meadow Road, Berlin, was charged Jan. 4 with evading responsibility and released after posting $100,000 bond. He pleaded not guilty to the charge last week during an appearance in New Britain Superior Court. The case was continued to March 20.
On Oct. 16, 2019, Janine Wiktor, 58, was struck and killed near Prentice Place apartments, 319 New Britain Road, Berlin. She died of injuries to her head, neck and torso. Police are familiar with Wiktor, who is homeless and pushes her belongings in a shopping cart, according to Story’s arrest warrant.
There was debris around the accident scene from Wiktor's shopping cart and belongings, including a shoe, and pieces of a broken vehicle grille and headlight, the warrant said. As police viewed security video from surrounding businesses, police noticed a red pickup truck at a nearby McDonald's that appeared to have frontend damage and distinct features. Police released the image to the media and public, asking for assistance identifying the vehicle and driver.
On Oct. 21 police received an anonymous tip that a person named “Manny Story” – who was affiliated with a body shop in New Britain – may have been involved in the incident, the warrant said.
Police went to the auto body business and saw a pickup truck in the parking lot that matched the one from the security video. Police observed front end damage, including a broken headlight, and distinct chrome features that matched the vehicle in the video. Police found new grille and headlight assembly kits inside the truck with stickers showing they were purchased on Oct. 17.