Man killed in Meriden hit-and-run, police search for driver

reporter photo

MERIDEN — Police said a 58-year-old man suffered fatal injuries after he was struck by an SUV, whose driver fled the scene, on Lewis Avenue Wednesday night. 

Police identified the victim as Clarence Harkless of New Britain. Police said he regularly spent time in Meriden and was known to many throughout the city.

Around 11:30 p.m. Wednesday, officers responded to a report of a person laying in the road on Lewis Avenue near MidState Medical Center, according to a police statement. 

Officers found the man laying in the northbound lane near 435 Lewis Ave. The victim was unresponsive and had injuries consistent with having been struck by a motor vehicle, police stated. Emergency crews, including Meriden firefighters and Hunters Ambulance, then took the man to MidState Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead.

Police interviewed witnesses, who said a white SUV was heading north on Lewis Avenue prior to the collision. Witnesses said they saw the vehicle pull over to the side of the road after striking the victim. A passenger exited the vehicle, looked around, and reentered the vehicle, before it fled the scene. The vehicle turned left onto Kensington Avenue toward Chamberlain Highway, police stated. 

Investigators are seeking the public’s assistance in the case. Police ask that anyone who witnessed, has other information about the crash, or who have video surveillance footage that may assist officers, contact the department by calling 203-630-6201. 

Reporter Ben Baker contributed to this report. 



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