Family speaks out after mother killed, child seriously hurt in B - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Family speaks out after mother killed, child seriously hurt in Bridgeport

Posted: Updated:
The 9-year-old victim was airlifted to Yale-New Haven Children's Hospital Monday. (WFSB photo) The 9-year-old victim was airlifted to Yale-New Haven Children's Hospital Monday. (WFSB photo)
BRIDGEPORT, CT (WFSB) -

A Bridgeport mother was hit and killed while crossing the street on Monday afternoon and her family told Eyewitness News she was trying to shield her son from an oncoming pickup truck.

Police said the incident happened around 3:30 p.m. on John Street near the West Avenue intersection.

The mother was identified as 41-year-old Carmen Martinez. Police said she and her 9-year-old son were crossing the street when they were struck by a pickup truck driven by 70-year-old Joseph Fraizer of Massachusetts.

Her family told Eyewitness Martinez and her son actually moved to Connecticut from New Jersey just a few months ago.

“[She’s] best sister in the world,” her brother Angel Martinez said.

Martinez had just picked him up from school and they we're walking back to their apartment, when they were hit.

Fraizer claimed he was blinded by the sunlight.

"I guess the sunlight was in his eyes.  He claims by the time he was aware of them crossing the street, he applied the brakes,” Bridgeport Police Captain AJ Perez said. “But was unable to stop the car and hit them.  He feels terrible."

Investigators told Eyewitness News that Carmen Martinez was rushed to St. Vincent's Hospital where she later died. Her son, who just last month was named a student of the month in his class, was airlifted to Yale-New Haven Children's Hospital with serious internal injuries. 

"She protected her son and she took the brunt of it, just being a mother, just like any ordinary parent,” Angel Martinez said.

Police said they are looking into a number of factors including speed. Police added Fraizer did stop and remained on the scene.

They also said where the mother and child crossed the road was not a designated intersection. However, there are several street lights.

"We're just hoping that, you know, he pulls through and everything is going to be OK," Michael Giannotti, Bridgeport police and fire spokesperson, said.

No charges were filed by police. The crash remains under investigation.

Carmen Martinez will be laid to rest back in New Jersey, her family said.

"Loving mother, parent, going to miss her dearly, but a beautiful person,” Angel Martinez said.

Copyright 2016 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.