Veteran NJ Sheriff's Officer Driving Marked Cruiser Hits, Kills 12-Year-Old Boy: Officials

What to Know

  • A 12-year-old boy died after being hit by a police cruiser in northern New Jersey Sunday night, authorities say
  • It was after 9 p.m.; the boy was walking on a Route 208 South exit ramp in Fair Lawn with some other children
  • The officer who hit him was identified as Michael Sansevere, who has served with the sheriff's office for about a decade

A 12-year-old boy died after being hit by a police cruiser in northern New Jersey Sunday night, authorities say. 

The boy was walking with some other children near the Fsiar Lawn Avenue exit ramp for Route 208 South shortly after 9 p.m. when he was hit, police said. Authorities believe he was trying to cross the multi-lane highway at the time. 

Michael Sansevere, a Bergen County sheriff's officer who was on patrol in the area, was driving the marked police cruiser involved in the accident. 

The Fair Lawn boy was pronounced dead shortly after the crash; his name was not immediately released. The public school district said it would provide counseling support to any students or staff struggling with the loss. 

"When our school community experiences a tragedy, such as the loss of a young life, it impacts all of us," read an email from Superintendent Nicholas Norcia. "Every child will process this news in his or her own way. You know your child better than anyone else. If you see that your child is grieving, please seek help from our counselors or another trained professional in the community." 

"As a father, this is the unthinkable and my heart goes out to the family," the superintendent added. "I ask anyone who reads this to hug your loved ones a little tighter today."

Additional support apart from the counseling will be provided when the district returns from spring break on April 22, Norcia said.

Sansevere, meanwhile, was taken to a hospital for evaluation and later released. He has served with the sheriff's office for 12 years.

The cause of the accident remains under investigation.

"As with all fatal accidents, the Bergen County Prosecutors Office has assumed responsibility of the investigation," the sheriff's office said in a statement. "The Bergen County Sheriff’s Office with continue to provide support services to our officers and our hearts go out to the family during this difficult time."

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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