Last month, we told you about a fatal hit and run that took the life of Gerry Julien, a fifteen-year-old military student visiting relatives in Colorado; see our previous coverage below.
Investigators from the Colorado State Patrol believe the incident took place as a result of a street race. Now, one of the suspected wheel men -- 21-year-old Derrick Fransua -- has been arrested in relation to the crime. But his alleged competitor remains at large. Details, photos and videos below.
At approximately 9:55 p.m. on July 20, as we've reported, a jogger later identified as Julien (a Californian enrolled at Marine Military Academy in Harlingen, Texas) was crossing Kipling at West Asbury Avenue, just south of West Jewell Avenue, when two vehicles -- a red or orange Chrysler PT Cruiser and what was subsequently said to be a dark blue Volkswagen Jetta -- zoomed through the area in what appeared to be a street race.
It's believed that the PT Cruiser struck Julien -- but neither vehicle stopped at the scene.
Julien later died at the scene, shattering his entire family, including his sister, Allison, who shared her memories of her beloved brother with CBS4. "I'm still waiting for him to run in the door and hug me," she told the station.
Despite a detailed description of the vehicle that took Julien's life, well over a week passed without any progress in the case. But now, the Colorado State Patrol reveals that Fransua was custody Monday on suspicion that he was driving the PT Cruiser when it struck the teenager.
According to 9News, the break in the case came as a result of a tip from a family member.
Anticipated charges against Fransua include suspicion of leaving the scene of an accident involving death, vehicular homicide-reckless driving and tampering with physical evidence (all felonies), plus a trio of misdemeanors: engaging in a speed contest, reckless driving and false reporting to authorities. His bond is likely to be set at $10,000.
Meanwhile, the search continues for the driver of the Jetta. Anyone with additional info about the case is encouraged to phone the Colorado State Patrol at 303-239-4501.
Look below to see a 9News report about Fransua's arrest, followed by the CBS4 interview with Allison and a larger look at Fransua's booking photo. That's followed by our previous coverage, including additional photos of Gerry and another video.
If you had to choose an ideal place and time for street racing in the Denver metro area, would you pick Kipling just shy of 10 p.m. on a Saturday night?
Most of those with an I.Q. over fifty probably would answer "no." But a pair of drivers apparently decided such a stunt was a good idea -- and as a result, Gerard "Gerry" Julien, a fifteen-year-old aspiring Navy SEAL who was jogging in the area, is dead, the victim of a hit and run.
The website of Marine Military Academy in Harlingen, Texas, lists Julien, of Scotts Valley, California, as one of 69 plebes joining the MMA cadet corps at the start of the 2012-2013 school year; the photo above is from the parade introducing them. Also featured in 7News' coverage of the tragedy is a shot of Julien playing football....
...and taking part in training activities:
But young Julien's dreams of the future were short-circuited this past weekend in Lakewood, where he was visiting family who live in the area. At approximately 9:55 p.m. on Saturday, according to the Colorado State Patrol, a jogger later identified as Julien was crossing Kipling at West Asbury Avenue, just south of West Jewell Avenue, when two vehicles -- a red or orange Chrysler PT Cruiser and a black sedan -- roared through the area in what appeared to be a street race.
It's believed that the PT Cruiser struck Julien.
It's not as if the driver didn't know he or she had come into contact with someone or something. The violence of the impact is epitomized by suspected damage to its front grill, hood, windshield and roof. Yet neither the PT Cruiser nor the sedan stopped at the scene of the accident.
Julien was transported to St. Anthony's Central Hospital with serious injuries, and he failed to respond to treatment.
No arrests have been made at this point, but that appears to only be a matter of time. The state patrol notes that the PT Cruiser in question has been located, and its driver identified, following a tip from a family member of the person who'd been behind the wheel.
Thus far, that individual has not been publicly named, and there's no info yet on the sedan or its driver. The investigation continues as Julien's family mourns an unimaginable shock. Our condolences to his friends and loved ones.
Here's the 7News report:
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!
More from our Colorado Crimes archive: "Gregory Hauptmann busted in David Hernandez hit-and-run after taking car for repair."