Witness describes driver in Laurel hit-and-run

From MetroBus video.

A witness has come forward to say that the hit-and-run driver in the white pickup that struck a pedestrian on Route 198 near Route 1 is a Hispanic male in his 30s or 40s, police say.

The witness also says the driver purposefully sped up and weaved through traffic to get away from the scene. The crash was captured on a MetroBus dash cam.

The driver was last seen traveling eastbound on 198 heading into Anne Arundel County.

Police say the man had to have known he struck the victim. The victim’s identity is still unknown.

The crash occurred at 2:13 p.m. Wednesday, when a man was walking on the sidewalk of Route 198 near Route 1, said Laurel Police spokesman Jim Collins.

A white pickup truck traveling east left the roadway and hit the man.

The video shows the white pickup truck suddenly lose control and hit the man walking on the sidewalk. Witnesses say the man, described as white and in his 50s or 60s, seemed to brace himself an instant before the impact, but it did no good.

Police say the victim was hit so hard, he flew over the guardrail and fell down a 30-foot embankment and landed in the parking lot of a shopping center in front of Alicia Aristy's hair salon, nearly 100 feet from the point where he was struck.

Authorities are having trouble identifying the victim, who survived but remains in critical condition..

Police believe the striking vehicle is a Ford F-250 pickup truck from 2005 to 2007 -- with possible damage to the right front bumper and the windshield.

And they believe the driver knew he hit someone.

“He has to know,” says Cpl. Brad DiPietro. “Theres no way of not knowing that you just hit somebody.”

Anyone with information is asked to contact Laurel Police Department at 301-498-0092.