What to Know
- Lt. Christopher Robateau had stopped in the northbound lanes on the outer roadway in Newark of the NJ Turnpike just before 6:30 a.m. Friday
- Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop says the 23-year veteran of the police department was helping a motorist
- Robateau is survived by a wife and three children
A Jersey City police lieutenant on his way to work was struck and killed on the New Jersey Turnpike.
Lt. Christopher Robateau, 49, of Cartaret, was driving a Toyota Rav4 when he got into an accident with a freightliner box truck on the northbound lanes on the outer roadway in Newark just before 6:30 a.m. Friday, according to officials.
When he got out of his car to assist the other driver of the truck, he was struck by a passing driver in a Ford Ranger, authorities say. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
Sgt. Lawrence Peele says the passing motorist who hit Robateau stopped and is cooperating with investigators.
"We have over 900 police officers in Jersey City. He may be our best," said Jersey City Police Chief Mike Kelly.
Robeateau was a 23-year veteran of the department. He is survived by a wife and three children, and Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop says the city will be honoring all benefits for the family.
"We will recognize it as if he was on duty ast the time, being that he was assisting another vehicle, and I think that is something we'd want any police officer to do," he said.
In Robeateau's neighborhood, family and friends were grief-stricken to hear he had died. He was awarded more than 40 meritous honors as a cop, but his greatest honor, they said, was being a husband and father to three kids.
"We spoke to the children this morning and made sure they understood their father died a hero trying to help someone else," said Kelly.