Youth Sports Coach Identified as Man Killed in Vernon Hit-and-Run; Vehicle Seized in Investigation

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Police have identified the man who was killed in a hit-and-run crash in Vernon on Tuesday afternoon and said they seized a vehicle in connection with the investigation.

Emergency crews were called to Phoenix Street just before 3 p.m. after getting a report of a crash. When police arrived, they said they found 44-year-old Andrew Aggarwala.

Police said Wednesday evening that while officers were conducting a checkpoint on Phoenix Street earlier in the afternoon, they developed information that led them to seize a vehicle at the checkpoint. Police would not release more information about the vehicle or what led them to seize it.

No one has been arrested in the investigation as of Wednesday evening, police said.

Aggarwala has two children who attend Vernon Public Schools and school officials have been in contact with the family to offer assistance, police said. Counseling is available to the school community.

According to police, Aggarwala was well known in the Vernon community for his volunteer work as a youth sports coach. Officers said Aggarwala was a leader with the Vernon Soccer Club and was active with other youth sports organizations.

"Andrew was well-loved among our club and will be missed. Andrew was a dedicated board member, coach and friend to all who knew him. He was recognized with multiple awards for his volunteerism and community involvement," Vernon Soccer Club President Keith Hodson said in part. "Andrew was to be the recipient of our 2020 Volunteer of the Year for his dedication to the Town of Vernon and its youth," he added.

Investigators said they believe that Aggarwala was walking his puppy along Phoenix Street when he was struck by a vehicle that left the scene.

The dog ran off from the scene and officers and Vernon's animal control officer have been trying to find it, police said. Authorities believe the dog ran away in the Rails to Trails area.

Authorities said the puppy had a brown leash attached to him at the time of the accident. If you find the puppy, you're urged to call police. As of Wednesday evening, police said despite repeated efforts using a drone and officers, they have been unsuccessful in finding it.

Police are asking the public for video of the roadway from houses on Phoenix Street, Church Street, Warren Avenue, Maple Avenue, Washington Street, Birch Street, Lake Street, Taylor Street or any nearby areas. They said they are particularly interested in video from 2:45 p.m. and 3 p.m. on Tuesday.

Anyone with information or video is asked to contact Vernon Police Department at (860) 872-9126.

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