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Police locate car, person of interest in Fort Pierce hit-and-run crash that killed child

Yaceny Berenice Rodriguez-Gonzalez, 10, struck while crossing street Thursday morning
Yaceny Berenice Rodriguez-Gonzalez, 10, and car involved in deadly Fort Pierce hit-and-run crash on Sept. 23, 2021.jpg
Posted at 10:28 AM, Sep 24, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-24 18:02:12-04

FORT PIERCE, Fla. — Fort Pierce police said Friday they've identified a person of interest and found the car involved in a deadly hit-and-run crash that killed a 10-year-old girl on Thursday morning.

Yaceny Berenice Rodriguez-Gonzalez was struck around 6:15 a.m. at Skylark Drive and Oleander Avenue while crossing the street to get to her school bus.

The driver of a white, four-door sedan took off after hitting Rodriguez-Gonzalez. The girl later died at the hospital.

Jaceny Berenice Rodriguez-Gonzalez, 10, killed in hit-and-run crash in Fort Pierce on Sept. 23, 2021.jpg
Yaceny Berenice Rodriguez-Gonzalez, 10, killed in hit-and-run crash in Fort Pierce on Sept. 23, 2021.

Police said they located the vehicle involved around 4 p.m. Thursday and also identified a person of interest in the case.

"The investigation revealed a person of interest, and we’re currently working in conjunction with the Nineteenth Judicial Circuit State Attorney’s Office," said Curtis Jennings, the public affairs manager for the Fort Pierce Police Department, in a written statement.

Police have not released the name of the person of interest.

According to investigators, Rodriguez-Gonzalez was crossing the street on Thursday to get to her school bus, which was stopped with its red lights flashing and stop sign extended.

A white sedan going northbound went around the parked bus, hit the girl, then took off.

When officers arrived at the scene, they found Rodriguez-Gonzalez lying unconscious in a grassy area. She was taken to Lawnwood Regional Medical Center, where she later died from her injuries.

Major Carlos Rodriguez with the Fort Pierce Police Department said the driver involved will face charges of hit-and-run with serious bodily injury causing death.

Investigators are still looking for information about the crash, so if you know anything that can help detectives, call Treasure Coast Crime Stoppers at 1-800-273-8477 or Fort Pierce Police Traffic Homicide Investigator Shane Stokes at 772-302-4764 or sstokes@fppd.org.