Hi all! The sweet little girl in the photo is Sheyla Pichardo. Sweet little Sheyla was only 7-years-old and tragically killed last week, as she and her mother were struck by a hit-and-run driver while walking to school in West New York, NJ. Her mother was hospitalized with injuries, however, poor little Sheyla didn’t make it. She died on impact and there was nothing her mother could do to bring her back.
This has been an excruciating loss and has caused all who knew her devastating pain. As if the loss of their only child wasn’t enough, Sheyla’s parents, Javier and Yeimi have had to risk their jobs, as they try to grieve for their child. They’ve had to leave their minimum wage jobs, risking everything — as they don’t receive paid off days or any kind of bereavement. They’ve had to pay for funeral and hospital costs, all while trying to mourn the loss of their angel.
We’ve set up this fund in hopes of helping Javier and Yeimi through this tough time. Any donation can help ease the pain. This poor family has gone through more than any parents should in a lifetime. Nothing can bring sweet Sheyla back, but her parents shouldn’t have to suffer any further. They shouldn’t be punished with financial burden, when they just experienced the most agonizing suffering anyone can go through. Please put yourself in their position and think what it would feel like to lose the person who you love the most in the world.
Please help us out! Every penny counts! If you can’t help financially, at least SHARE the story so that someone that can help, does.
UPDATE: 3-1-16, 10 p.m.
“I want to thank law enforcement and all the officials for all the hard work they put in,” says Sheyla Pichardo’s father, Javier. “I’m heartbroken; I lost my daughter. This is not an easy situation.”
This case was solved by hard work, old-fashioned police work and technology. Multiple agencies were involved.
About midnight Monday night, officers from the West New York Police Department and Hudson County Sheriff’s Office located the vehicle.
“We were able to get the first two and the last two characters from the license plate and then just a series of detectives going through different plates we came up with the car out of Newark,” says Capt. Alejandro De Rojas, of the West New York Detective Bureau.
That vehicle was a black late model Chevy Tahoe with chrome detailing that struck seven-year-old Sheyla and her mother, Yeimi Vital, about 8:19 a.m. Monday morning as the two held hands on their way to the first-grader’s school.
Before fleeing the scene, the suspect got out to see what happened.
The P.S. 1 student and her mother were in the crosswalk when the accident happened, says Sgt. Bruce Miller, of the Hudson County Sheriff’s Office.
“It matched the description of the vehicle that was shown in all the videos. Arrested was Johana Rosas-Alvarez, 26, the owner of the Chevy Tahoe and her boyfriend, Fabian Rodriguez Calles, 33, who is from Equador and is believed to be an illegal alien,” says Hudson County Sheriff, Frank Schillari.
Rodriguez was charged with leaving the scene of an accident with injury, leaving the scene of a fatal accident, endangering and injuring a victim and hindering apprehension. Rosas-Alvarez with false police reports, for reporting the vehicle stolen to the Hillside Police Department after the accident. They are being held without bail.
The couple lived in Newark and have children of their own.
The camera systems do work and the family is faced with an unspeakable tragedy.
“It’s hard to imagine the type of people who would get out, see what they’ve done to a child and take off and run,” Mayor Nicholas Sacco says.
It’s rewarding to be able to catch the people who do harm to children.
“It just steps the volume up and the pace up a little quicker,” says West New York Police Director Robert Antelos. “People take it more personal when a child is involved.”
The director says they’re giving as much support as they can to the family, the town is here for them.
“We’re proud of the result — even though this is a terrible, terrible tragedy and as a father I can’t even imagine the pain that this gentleman’s going through,” says North Bergen Police Chief, Robert Dowd.
“And how they did this in a timely fashion so the family can get some type of closure and I guess, ya know, it will take time,” Speaker Vincent Prieto says.
“We’re devastated, we were upset… we were furious yesterday, but thank G-d to our great police department,” Mayor Felix Roque says.
Javier wants everyone to learn from this experience.
“I speak from the bottom of my heart. Take care of your kids. God bless all the children,” Pichardo says, adding that unfortunately his wife couldn’t be there, since she is still recovering from her injuries.
He says he’s not angry at the driver.
“For the man that did this to my daughter, I do not wish him any harm,” he says. “God bless him. If he hears this message, I hold no anger towards him. I just ask him if he has a family, to step in my shoes.”
Fabian Rodriguez (31-years-old) and Johana Rosas-Alvarez (26-years-old) were arrested in connection to Fatal Accident. According to Hudson County Sheriff Frank Schillari. The male was arrested for driving the vehicle that killed 7-year-old Sheyla Pichardo and then leaving the scene of the accident. The Female was charged for allegedly falsely reporting the vehicle as stolen after the accident took place.
More updates coming soon.
UPDATE: 3-1-16, 9 a.m.
Sheriff Department has just confirmed that two people have been arrested in regards to yesterday’s fatal hit and run. A Press Conference is scheduled today at West New York Town Chambers at noon with more information.
UPDATE: 2-29-16, 8 p.m.
Police are searching for the person responsible for the hit-and-run death of a 7-year-old West New York girl who was walking to school with her mother.
“She was a happy baby with all her future and because of you coward driving like crazy, like a maniac person — you just killed an angel,” says Paola Osorio, a family friend from North Bergen.
A black late model Chevy Tahoe with chrome detailing struck seven-year-old Sheyla Pichardo about 8:19 a.m. Monday morning at the intersection of 61st Street and Van Buren Place.
Before fleeing the scene, a passenger in the SUV allegedly got out to see what happened.
The School No. 1 student and her mother, Yeimi Vital, were were in the crosswalk when the accident happened, says Sgt. Bruce Miller of the Hudson County Sheriff’s office.
“She (Vital) got also hit and then when they brought her here she was in pain but they told her if she wanted to be checked and she said ‘no,’ she doesn’t care about her(self), she just wanted to hold the baby,” Osorio says.
According to Hudson County Deputy Chief Prosecutor Leo Hernandez, Sheyla was pronounced dead at Palisades Medical Center.
Vital, 32, was treated for non-life threatening injuries and released Monday evening.
Everyone is urging the driver to come forward.
“If you have a heart, if you’re human, come and show yourself – it’s not fair,” Osorio says.
And if you’ve seen something, say something — no matter how small.
“Call the police, you have to help. You have to help each other,” Osorio says. “If you don’t help each other, then in what world are we living now, huh? Imagine if it’s your kid.”
Flags flew at half-staff around town for Sheyla… and her brokenhearted parents are mourning their only child.
“I told her we’re going to be handling all the funeral arrangements because we owe her that much,” says Mayor Felix Roque. “And it’s sad – it’s a terrible day for us here in West New York.”
And they’ll stop at nothing to bring this person to justice.
“I will spend all the money and all the resources that we have in West New York to make sure we accomplish this,” Roque says.
Law enforcement can’t share many details since it’s an active investigation. The mayor told me and they reiterated it at an afternoon news conference that the sheriff’s department, prosecutor’s office and police department are working around the clock, interviewing witnesses and viewing camera footage from nearby businesses.
They are also trying to identify the license plate of the vehicle that hit Sheyla.
A 7-year-old named Sheyla Pichardo according to a family friend, was killed this morning in a hit-and-run accident at the intersection of 61st St and Van Buren Place. West New York Police and the Hudson County Sheriff’s Department are looking for a Chevy Tahoe late model in connection with this incident.
This is a breaking story. Please check back for more information as it becomes available.