A 22-year-old New Britain man appeared before a judge, charged with being the driver in a fatal hit and run that occurred over the weekend.
Angel Colon's family invited Channel 3 to the funeral home because they wanted to show us just how much their brother was loved.
Services are being held for the public from 6 to 8 at St. Mary’s Funeral Home.
It's been an enormous turnout for a man that despite being disabled would lend a helping hand to all of his neighbors.
Despite his family's suffering, they have offered their support to the suspects family.
22-year-old Jonathan Soto stood before a judge at New Britain Superior Court on Wednesday.
“Mr. Soto is a lifelong New Britain resident, 22-years-old, full-time job as a warehouse worker, has a four-and-a-half-year-old daughter,” said Jason Sucoll, Soto’s attorney.
Soto turned himself into police on Tuesday after learning that a warrant for his arrest had been issued.
“There is no criminal history whatsoever,” said Sucoll.
He was charged with negligent homicide, evading responsibility in the operation of a motor vehicle and driving without insurance.
“I would absolutely ask for a suicide watch on him,” said Sucoll.
Police released surveillance photo of Soto's car on Allen Street. It was taken around 4 o'clock on that rainy Saturday when 64-year-old Angel "Kiki" Colon was hit during one of his routine walks.
“Our uncle was an angel walking on earth,” said Victoria Lays, Colon’s niece.
Colon was unconscious but still breathing when paramedics arrived, he later died at the hospital.
“He always liked to walk all throughout the community of New Britain, and this is why I put this on my shirt because he was always walking and he will always be with us,” said Alexandra Torres, Colon’s niece.
There were multiple witnesses to the crash and in its wake, police received more than 50 tips from the public. Those tips lead them to Soto's home on Convoy Drive where his brother, Angel Ortiz, told police Soto had sold the Toyota Avalon.
Police said Ortiz had lied to them and he was the one who had sold the car.
“We all wish none of this happened,” said Ortiz.
Police pieced it together through a message on their Facebook page tipping them off that the car was being sold with driver's side damage on "Offerup.com" for $300.
“I want to thank the community and the New Britain Police Department for the hard work and effort they have done in this matter,” said Raymond Colon, Angel’s brother.
Another tip led police to find there had been a passenger in Soto's car at the time of the crash, Eric Colon.
Eric Colon told police that fateful day, Soto had reached down to pick something up that fell out of the driver's side door and stated, "Johnathan looked up just as he was about to hit someone who was in the road."
He also said Soto, "stopped quick and then kept going."
Soto admitted to police he was the driver when he turned himself in.
“We just want to see some justice,” said Lays.
The last remaining brother of Angel’s 8-sibling family hugged Soto's family in the hallway outside the courtroom before the arraignment.
“With God in my heart I realize a mother is suffering a loss of a son just as we're suffering the loss of my brother,” said Raymond.
Soto's mother didn't want to speak with Channel 3 outside of court.
Angel’s family says there is still a long road to travel ahead.
“He was walking on earth and now he's walking through the gates of heaven,” said Hilda “Lucy” Jusino, Angel’s sister.
Soto was held on $500,00 bond and is expected back in court on June 1st.
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