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Driver identified in fatal Wheat Ridge hit-and-run crash

Police said the victim, Carmen Cennamo, fell off the sidewalk and into the street, where he was hit by a passing car.

WHEAT RIDGE, Colo. — Police are not recommending charges against the driver in a hit-and-run crash that killed a man in Wheat Ridge last month.

The crash happened Sept. 29 in the area of Kipling Street and 41st Avenue. Police said the victim, 56-year-old Carmen Cennamo, tripped and fell off the sidewalk and onto Kipling Street, where he was hit by a passing car. The driver then left the scene.

RELATED: Man with walker killed in Wheat Ridge hit-and-run crash

Police said video evidence helped them identify the car, and eventually the driver. They talked to the driver and passenger, who both indicated they were not aware someone had been hit. 

"You never know, talking to somebody weeks after an incident happened, whether or not that person is being fully truthful, so we might never know the story in its entirety. We weren’t able to contact them immediately after that accident," Joanna Small with the Wheat Ridge Police Department said. "We’ll never be able to tell you with all certainty that drugs and alcohol weren’t involved, but all signs point to the fact that they legitimately didn’t realize they had struck a human being."

Hit-and-runs happen often, but not as many are actually solved. Small said detectives spent weeks combing through surveillance video from nearby businesses to find the car involved in this crash. 

There was no video of the crash, or any pictures of the car’s license plate. Luckily, someone saw the make and color, and police began searching.

"They were actually able to use video from a nearby business where you saw a vehicle that fit that description approaching the business and the people actually got out and one of them went into the gas station," Small said. "We located that person, and that’s a big win. If the evidence doesn’t bear out that a charge is appropriate, that is out of our control. It’s our job to be fair."

The district attorney's office will determine whether any charges will be filed, but police said they are not recommending charges in the case. 

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