Toms River Man Pleads Guilty in Lakewood Fatal Hit-and-Run

Ocean County Prosecutor Bradley D. Billhimer announced that on February 25, Alexander Politan, 31, of Toms River, pled guilty to Knowingly Leaving the Scene of a Motor Vehicle Accident Resulting in Death, as well as Driving with a Suspended License, before the Honorable Guy P. Ryan, J.S.C.

At the time of his sentencing on April 17, the State will recommend a sentence of seven years New Jersey State Prison.

Officials say on Friday, October 4, 2019, at approximately 9:20 p.m., Lakewood Police were summoned to Oak Street, south of Albert Avenue in Lakewood Township for a report of a pedestrian struck by a vehicle.

Investigation at the scene revealed that Jesus Lopez- Grande, 15, of Lakewood, and his father, Jesus Lopez-Ramirez, 37, also of Lakewood, were walking near the shoulder portion of Oak Street when they were struck by a vehicle.

Jesus Lopez-Ramirez sustained an injury to his elbow. Jesus Lopez-Grande was found lying face down in the driveway of a home on Oak Street. Jesus Lopez-Grande suffered fatal injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene.

Further investigation revealed vehicle debris was left at the scene. Detectives determined from the debris that vehicle parts located at the crash scene belonged to a black 2014 Jeep Cherokee.

At that time, the Lakewood Police Department, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Vehicular Homicide Unit, and Ocean County Sheriff’s Office launched an extensive search to locate that vehicle.

On Sunday, October 6, 2019, a black Jeep Cherokee matching the description of the suspect vehicle was discovered in the driveway of a residence on New Hampshire Avenue in Toms River, according to officials. The residence was unoccupied. The black Jeep Cherokee had damage to the passenger side. A search warrant was obtained for the Jeep Cherokee.

Further investigation revealed that Politan was operating the vehicle when it struck Jesus Lopez-Grande and Jesus Lopez-Grande. Politan was located and apprehended on October 8, 2019.

He has been lodged in the Ocean County Jail since the date of his arrest accord.