Man killed in Hempstead Tpke. hit-run

Nassau County police and court records said Joaquim

Nassau County police and court records said Joaquim Gloria, 38, of Senate Place in Mineola, hit a jogger with his 2008 Chevrolet box truck late Wednesday night, then left. Police did not say where or how the truck was found, but said Gloria was arrested a short time after he fled. (June 16, 2011) (Credit: NCPD)

A 22-year-old jogger was struck and killed early Thursday by a suspected hit and run driver on Hempstead Turnpike in the second fatal pedestrian accident on the Nassau roadway this month.

The busy turnpike is the deadliest road for pedestrians in the tri-state area, according to a transportation advocacy group.

The jogger, Salem Enayetullah, was on his nightly 10-mile run when a white box truck struck him as he tried to cross the turnpike near the intersection of Poplar Street in West Hempstead, police said.

Enayetullah, who lived in an apartment just blocks from where he was fatally injured, was struck about midnight as he crossed the turnpike from south to north. He was dead on arrival at Winthrop-University Hospital in Mineola, police said.

Authorities Thursday charged Joaquim M. Gloria, 38, of Mineola, with leaving the scene of an accident with death. Judge Angelo A. Delligatti of First District Court in Hempstead ordered Gloria jailed on $25,000 bail.

Gloria was freed on bail shortly after 6 last night.

Enayetullah, a former Hofstra University student, was wearing headphones during his run and wasn't in the pedestrian crosswalk, Homicide Squad head Det. Lt. John Azzata said.

Azzata said he didn't know whether Enayetullah was crossing against or with the nearby pedestrian crossing signal.

Yesterday's fatality follows a June 4 crash in which a 19-year-old man was struck and killed while walking across the turnpike near Gardiners Avenue in Levittown at 4:30 a.m. He was pronounced dead at the scene. No criminal charges were filed.

The Tri-State Transportation Campaign, a nonprofit advocacy group pushing for greater pedestrian safety, has repeatedly listed Hempstead Turnpike as the deadliest road for pedestrians in the tri-state area.

The assistant district attorney prosecuting the latest case, Shanon N. LaCorte, said in court Thursday that Gloria drove "at a high rate of speed" and "didn't stop" after hitting Enayetullah.

More investigation would be needed to determine the truck's precise speed, Azzata said.

Prosecutors said Gloria's truck had front-end damage.

Robert M. Vella Jr., Gloria's Mineola-based defense attorney, said the crash was unintentional. Vella declined to comment on the charge of fleeing the scene.

Enayetullah had been studying at Hofstra University, but was not enrolled this semester, said university spokeswoman Karla Schuster.

Enayetullah graduated from high school in Sharon, Mass., in 2007.

"He was a great kid," said family friend Mahmud Awwal. "He was working hard to get a great education and become successful. Everyone who knew him will miss him."

With Jennifer Maloney

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