Today’s news:

Rich Hill man pleads guilty to hit−and−run: DA

RICHMOND HILL — A Richmond Hill mechanic pleaded guilty to manslaughter charges Monday in the hit−and−run death of a 12−year−old boy whom he struck after fleeing the scene of a minor traffic accident, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said.

The DA said 48−year−old Jian Franjul pleaded guilty to first−degree manslaughter charges for killing Jacob Colon on Atlantic Avenue in December 2006, shortly after fleeing the scene of a fender−bender he had gotten into with another driver two blocks away.

“What would have amounted to simply reporting a minor fender bender recklessly escalated into a deadly hit−and−run accident in which a young boy lost his life,” Brown said. “Hopefully, this guilty plea will give some solace to the victim’s family and will serve as a measure of justice for a senseless death.”

Police said Franjul, of 87−57 124 St., ran a red light at the corner of 108th Street and Atlantic Avenue after fleeing the scene of another accident Dec. 16, 2006. Witnesses told TimesLedger Newspapers after the incident that Jacob was crossing the street at the intersection when Franjul allegedly struck him with a black Mercedes he was test driving, almost killing him.

“He [Jacob] waited for the walk signal to turn,” said Rosario Rodriguez, who saw the entire incident. “He took two steps out [onto the road] and the guy just came through and hit him.”

Franjul is scheduled to be sentenced Jan. 8 at Queens Supreme Court in Kew Gardens.

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