NO SLEEP TILL BROOKLYN: Suspected hit-and-run killer heading back for justice

March 6, 2013 By Colleen Long Associated Press
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Police in New York were awaiting the return of a man arrested in Pennsylvania in connection with a gruesome car crash that killed a pregnant woman and her husband on their way to a hospital.

Julio Acevedo, after days of talk that he would surrender, quietly walked to officers waiting in cars in a Bethlehem, Pa., convenience store parking lot on Wednesday and was arrested on charges of leaving the scene of an accident, New York Police Department spokesman Paul Browne said.

Acevedo was ordered held without bail on a charge of being a fugitive from justice late Wednesday during a video hearing, and a judge said he’d face an extradition hearing Thursday to address his return to New York. Acevedo said he understood.

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The judge said it was expected Acevedo would waive extradition, meaning he’d agree to return to New York.

Acevedo is accused of speeding down a Brooklyn street at 60 mph early Sunday and crashing into a car carrying Nachman and Raizy Glauber, who belonged to a close-knit ultra-Orthodox Jewish community. The Glaubers, both 21 years old, died Sunday, and their premature son, delivered by cesarean section, died Monday.

The surrender of Acevedo on Wednesday evening was brokered by a friend who had been in touch with police earlier in the day. The friend met officers at New York’s Grand Central Terminal and then led them to Acevedo in Bethlehem, about 80 miles away, police said.

It was unclear if Acevedo had an attorney. The friend had told police that Acevedo would surrender after consulting an attorney, but none was with him when he turned himself in, Browne said.

Acevedo has said he was fleeing a gunman when his borrowed BMW slammed into a hired car carrying the couple. He told the Daily News he fled because he was afraid he’d be killed.

Police, though, said there were no reports of shots fired in the area around that time.

The fatal crash occurred just after midnight Saturday, when Raizy Glauber, who was seven months pregnant, decided to go to the hospital because she was feeling unwell, her family said. The Glaubers called a livery cab, a hired car arranged via telephone, not hailed off the street like a yellow cab.

The crash with the BMW reduced the livery cab to a crumpled heap, and Raizy Glauber was thrown from it. The driver of the cab was knocked unconscious.

The Glaubers were from Brooklyn, home to the largest community of ultra-Orthodox Jews outside Israel, more than 250,000, and were members of the Satmar Hasidic sect. Raizy Glauber grew up in a prominent rabbinical family. Nachman Glauber, whose family founded a line of clothing for Orthodox Jews, was studying at a rabbinical college.

The couple’s son weighed only about 4 pounds when he was delivered, neighbors and friends said. He died of extreme prematurity, the city medical examiner’s office said.

He was buried near his parents’ graves, a community spokesman said. About a thousand people turned out for the couple’s funeral a day earlier.

Community members hoped Acevedo would face murder charges, spokesman Isaac Abraham said.

“We in the community hope that today is Acevedo’s last day that he sees daylight for the rest of his life,” he said after Wednesday’s arrest.

Acevedo was arrested last month on a charge of driving while under the influence, and the case is pending. He was stopped by police after they said he was driving erratically around 3 a.m. on Feb. 17. He had a blood-alcohol level of 0.13, over the limit of 0.08, police said.

He served about a decade in prison in the 1990s for manslaughter after he was convicted of shooting a Brooklyncriminal whose moniker, 50 Cent, was the inspiration for rapper Curtis Jackson’s current stage name.

How Acevedo came to possess the BMW is under investigation. The registered owner was arrested Sunday on insurance fraud charges related to the vehicle, but the case was deferred.

Associated Press writer Tom Hays contributed to this report.

Story updated 8 am Thursday

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