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One Killed When Car Crashed into Mall in Long Hill Township

By kbm0423 on
Long Hill

Police in Long Hill Township are investigating a fatal crash that occurred on Tuesday morning.

According to police, on April 12, at approximately 10:32 a.m., officers responded to the Valley Mall in Gillette for a reported single-vehicle crash. 

Police said that witnesses on the scene reported the vehicle was traveling through the parking lot at a high rate of speed before it crashed behind Home Goods. 

The investigation revealed that a blue 2021 Lexus IS300 was traveling south at a high rate of speed in the mall parking lot when it left the roadway, struck a tree, and came to rest in low-lying water along the Passaic River. 

According to police, responding officers entered the water and broke the vehicle's windows to access the driver. 

The driver and single occupant, Lajoy Battle, 41, of Jersey City, was unresponsive with no pulse. 

Police said that the extensive damage to the vehicle hindered initial access and extrication of the driver. 

The crash caused serious injuries to the driver, who was pronounced deceased at the scene by paramedics. 

The driver was extricated by members of the Stirling Fire Department, Millington Fire Department, Berkeley Heights Fire Department, and Morris County Sheriff's Emergency Services Unit.

Police said that the driver of the Lexus was transported to the Morris County Medical Examiner's Office, where an autopsy will be conducted to determine the cause of death. 

The Long Hill Township Police Department is continuing the investigation of this crash, and anyone with information is asked to call 908-647-1800.