Family pleads for hit-and-run driver involved in a deadly crash to come forward

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The family of a man struck and killed on a busy Gainesville highway is pleading for justice.

The incident happened before 11:45 p.m. Sunday in the 1700 block of Atlanta Highway, according to officials. A passerby saw 25-year-old Edwin Velasquez's body on the side of the road and called the police.

FOX 5's Marissa Mitchell spoke with Velasquez's niece Wednesday. Karen Velasquez said the married father of four had moved to Gainesville from El Salvador last year to make a better life for his family.

"The whole family is appalled that someone would hit him and just leave him on the side of the road," she said.

Police want the driver involved to come forward.

“There's no doubt in our minds that they know he was hit and unfortunately they left that poor man there to die on the side of the road,” Gainesville Police Sgt. Kevin Holbrook said.

Sgt. Kevin Holbrook told Mitchell the vehicle involved should have front-end damage on the passenger side.

“We believe it is a full-size Chevrolet or GM product, possibly a Silverado, Yukon or Tahoe... a 1999 to 2005 model,” said Sgt. Holbrook. “We have been canvassing the area and speaking with individuals looking for surveillance video and any information that we can.”

“I’m sure the kids would want to have justice for their father as well as the wife. [And with] the poverty that he left them in and was trying to get them away from, this really saddens us. We hope justice will come for him and someone will stand up and say something,” Karen Velasquez added.

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