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Waterbury police arrest suspect in fatal hit and run

67-year-old man was killed Oct. 22

WATERBURY, Conn. — Police arrested a suspect in a fatal hit and run from last month. 

Police said Richard DiNicola, 47, of Waterbury, was the operator of the white evading vehicle that struck and killed James Gatlin, 67.

Police said they located the suspect vehicle, a white 1994 Pontiac Sunbird, parked in the rear driveway of a three family residence in the 800 block of East Main Street. Police executed a search warrant on this vehicle. This vehicle was seized, processed by the Crime Scene Unit of the Forensic Division and held as evidence.

The police warrant revealed that the suspect wanted the vehicle he was driving "crushed" by a junk yard. A person who heard that thought the comment was unusual and contacted WPD. Also, the suspect had a vehicle that was neither insured or registered. He told a second person that he had been the driver - and did so unemotionally.

Police charged DiNicola with:

  • Evading Responsibility / accident resulting in death or serious physical injury
  • Tampering with Physical Evidence
  • Illegal Operation of Motor Vehicle under Suspension
  • Operation of Motor Vehicle without Insurance
  • Failure to Renew Registration
Credit: FOX61
Richard DiNicola

 DiNicola is being held a $100,000 bond pending arraignment in court/ GA 4.

Police responded to Wolcott Street on October 22 for calls of a crash involving a person. The suspect car was traveling northbound on Wolcott Street and struck the man who was crossing while pushing a shopping cart. The crash happened near the area of the "Pep Boys Auto Parts" of the street. 

The car did not stop and continue to drive northbound on Wolcott Street with the person still on the hood. When the car turned right, the person rolled off the hood and into the road. The car continued on Pritchard Road towards Stillson Road.

 Police released a video which they said showed the suspect vehicle turning right onto Pritchard Road from Wolcott Street at approximately 8:14 p.m. moments after striking the pedestrian on Wolcott Street. The police requested the public’s help to identifying suspect vehicle and operator.

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