‘Really devastating.’ 74-year-old ShopRite cashier killed in hit-and-run by work
Stamford police are searching for the driver of a red sedan who they say hit and killed a 74-year-old local woman as she crossed the street to get to work. It happened on West Main Street near Alvord Lane at 6:13 a.m. Tuesday. Police said Marie Jean-Charles had just gotten off the bus at the nearby stop.
News 12 learned Jean-Charles was a longtime and beloved cashier at the ShopRite that’s in the area.
“She'd been with us for 25 years,” said store manager Aamir Seyal. “It was really devastating when the officer came this morning. Very, very tough for our employees.”
“Our first reaction was we were speechless. We really didn't know what to say,” added assistant store manager Travis Wilson. “A few of us started crying immediately, so we’re really taken aback by it.”
Police said the victim was crossing the street southbound and was hit by a car coming from Greenwich in the eastbound travel lanes.
“The vehicle did leave the scene heading eastbound on West Main Street. We're not 100% sure on the make and model. We do know it's red. We do know it has a heavily damaged windshield and the driver's side headlight is out,” said Sgt. Jeffrey Booth.
Booth described the victim's injuries as “horrendous” and told News 12 that based on them, the driver was likely going faster than the speed limit, which is 30 mph. He also said even though it was dark out, there is no way the driver didn't realize he or she had been involved in "a vicious collision."
“None of the business cameras here look at the street, and there is no traffic camera at this particular traffic light. There is a camera up the street that partially caught the crash, and that's how we got the vehicle description.”
As police continue to investigate, the victim's work family is remembering her.
“We lost one of our good employees,” Seyal told News 12. “Very emotional day for us.”
“She was a really great woman. Beyond the work she did, she had a fantastic customer base. Customers loved her. Even if there was an open register nearby, customers wanted to wait in line just to speak with her and have their groceries rung up by her,” Wilson recalled. “We’re going to miss her a lot.”
The Cingari family, who owns 12 ShopRite stores in Connecticut, including the Stamford location, shared the following statement with News 12:
"Our hearts are very heavy today. Marie Jean Charles was a cherished part of the Cingari ShopRite family for 25 years. She will be missed by employees and customers alike. And of course, we are thinking of her family and loved ones."
Anyone who may have any further information on the suspect vehicle or crash is asked to contact the Stamford Police Department’s Collision Analysis and Reconstruction Squad at 203-977-4712.