Wednesday, December 17, 2014

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Hudson Valley

Fatal hit and run

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Albany/HV: Fatal hit and run
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The Albany County Sheriff's Department has identified the victim of a fatal hit and run in Albany. It happened early Saturday morning and police are calling the incident unlike anything they've ever seen. Our Madeleine Rivera reports.

CAPITAL REGION, N.Y. -- A few police barricades are the only signs of a deadly hit and run that happened early Saturday morning in this neighborhood.

"He hit the bicyclist head on, threw the bike, bike went flying to the side of the road," said Sheriff Craig Apple of the Albany County Police Department.

Pablo Cruz, a Schenectady resident and according to police, a recent parolee, was speeding away from an Albany County Sheriff's Deputy when he hit Paul Merges Jr., 45, who was riding along Manning Boulevard. But the impact didn't stop Cruz, who kept driving, even with Merges pinned to the truck's ladder rack.

"We don't want to get engaged in a high speed chase. But due to the nature of a human being hanging from the vehicle, we felt it was necessary to pursue the vehicle," said Apple.

The chase finally came to a full stop on Curry Road in Rotterdam after the truck's engine died.

"It seemed like something a little bit more than just a car accident. But we certainly weren't going to come outside and see at that point," said Karen Walker, a Rotterdam resident.

Those who did get a look at the scene say it's like nothing they've ever seen before.

"This is a bizarre. You think you've seen it all. Then something new comes up," said Apple.

"Scary knowing that something like that takes place. And then, you know, right in front of your house in Rotterdam. You don't hear that kind of stuff around here very often," said Walker.

We’ve spoken to some of Mergers' family members who were very emotional and didn't want to talk on camera. He leaves behind two children. Mergers worked at the New York State Department of Tax and Finance.

Pablo Cruz is facing multiple charges including manslaughter, DWI, violation of parole. He was released from state prison on November 2nd. ClientIP:, UserAgent: CCBot/2.0 ( Profile: TWCSAMLSP