- Date of Crime: 2007-08-13
- Location of crime:
- Hometown: Glen Burnie, MD
- Sex: M
- Age: 37
Manuel De Jesus Gonzalez-Geronimo
- Sex: M
- Arrest Status: charged
- Nationality: Guatamala
On August 13, 2007, state highway construction workers James Cronin and Martin Ruffin were killed by Manuel De Jesus Gonzalez-Geronimo on U.S. Route 29 in Burtonsville, Maryland.
Ruffin, 30, of Baltimore, was pronounced dead at the scene of the accident. County police said James Cronin, 37, of Glen Burnie, died from injuries sustained in the collision after being treated at the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore.
Three other construction workers, Hugo Perez, 28, and Rafael Ramos, 30, both of Columbia, and Jose Padillo, 35, of Glen Burnie, also were injured in the accident but are expected to survive.
According to police, Gonzalez-Geronimo, 31, was driving a van that pinned five construction workers against a guardrail at approximately 1 p.m. on Route 29, near the Howard County line, in Burtonsville, Maryland. Gonzalez-Geronimo was driving a white Ford Econoline 150 van that struck a truck, causing a chain reaction that involved at least one other truck and a cement mixer. The van then veered right and hit the workers.
After the crash, Gonzalez-Geronimo ran from the scene but later turned himself in to Prince George's County police. He was charged with fleeing the scene of a fatal collision and fleeing the scene of a crash that resulted in bodily injury.
The five male construction workers were sitting on the guardrail along the northbound lanes of Columbia Pike, also known as Route 29, taking a break. "It appears they were just sitting there minding their business," said Officer Rodney Barnes, a police spokesman.
Police spokeswoman Lucille Baur says Gonzalez-Geronimo revealed during his bail hearing that he is an undocumented worker from Guatemala being in the country illegally for seven years.
Documentation:14AUG07, Washington Post
Fleeing Driver Turns Himself Over to Police, by Ernesto Londono
14AUG07, Baltimore Sun
Guatemalan arrested in crash, by Michael Dresser
15AUG07, WJLA ABC 7 News
Suspect in Fatal Hit and Run is Illegal Immigrant
15AUG07, WTOP News 103.5FM
Second Man Dies From Injuries in Work Site Hit-and-Run
15AUG07, The Examiner, Atlanta, GA
Suspect in fatal crash says he’s an illegal immigrant, by Kathleen Miller