A young worker on a campaign for New Jersey's governor's race was struck and killed in a hit and run just days before he was going to receive his diploma from Rutgers, officials said Saturday.
Mujahid Henry, 23, of Newark, was walking in Linden early Friday when he was struck by a Ford Escape, Union County prosecutors said. The impact threw him into a parked car and Henry died at the scene, prosecutors said.
Henry received his bachelor's degree from the School of Public Affairs and Administration in January and was planning to take part in a commencement ceremony on Sunday, Rutgers officials said.
"Undoubtedly a star on the rise, he was characteristically hard-working, aspiring to earn a graduate degree and go into politics, amazing all around him with the energy that enabled him to be such a success in college while holding down two jobs and volunteering in support of local public officials," Chancellor Nancy Cantor wrote in a message to students.
Henry worked on Democrat Phil Murphy's campaign for New Jersey governor. He was also a legislative aide to Freeholder Leonard M. Luciano.
Henry "was a bright, outstanding worker who was looking forward to utilizing his college degree to make a difference in his community," the Phil Murphy campaign wrote on its Facebook page.
"We will always remember your infectious joy, and your passion to make the world a better place," the campaign wrote.
Eduardo Perez, 33, of Elizabeth, is charged with death by auto and leaving the scene of an accident, Union County prosecutors said.
Perez drove to Elizabeth, struck several more parked cars and then abandoned the SUV, prosecutors said. He was arrested nearby moments later, prosecutors said.
It wasn't known whether Perez had an attorney.
Anyone with information was urged to contact Linden Police Department Investigator Ian Conk at 908-474-8505.