DENVER (KDVR) — The family of a man killed in a hit-and-run while riding a scooter through downtown Denver is pleading for the driver to come forward.
Christopher Patton was killed around 1:30 a.m. on Sept. 7 while riding a stand-up scooter near 14th Street and Arapahoe Street with a group of friends.
“I miss him,” his mother Carolyn Jackson Wasserman said.
The 26-year-old was living in Denver while going to school and working at Walmart.
“He just had the most unique energy. The greatest smile. And just cared a lot about everyone,” Patton’s brother Denzell Perry told FOX31. “Chris was the most amazing person I can honestly say walked the face of the earth.”
The other four people in the group that night were visiting Patton from California. The friends were enjoying a night out on the town during the long holiday weekend.
“I think we all agreed that it was the best night of our life up until that point,” Perry said. “It was smiles all night. Laughter. And just a brotherhood that couldn’t be broken.”
Toward the end of the night, Perry says they decided to jump on scooters for a late-night trip to 7-Eleven.
“The most free night of our lives in the blink of an eye turned into a nightmare,” friend Dezmond Frazier said.
“We made a left onto Arapahoe. This car driving full speed came, revved his engine, swerved into Chris and hit Chris,” Perry said.
Chris did not survive.
“I don’t think it was an accident. I think this was someone out for blood. For whatever reason five black and brown men out having fun was a problem,” Perry said.
According to Perry, the vehicle intentionally swerved into a second member of their group, Sachal Jogi.
“Landing on the concrete face first and my whole face was battered and scattered with scabs,” Jogi said, adding that the vehicle hit him so hard he couldn’t breathe.
Jogi says he is only alive because of Chris’ heroism.
“He yelled ‘watch out’ forcing me to get out of the way, which I still got hit, but had he not said anything it may have been five people that died that night,” Jogi said.
The driver did not stop or stay at the scene. Police recovered what appears to be a piece of a side mirror and photos of the vehicle from nearby cameras.
“Just kept going. Never stopped. Never slowed down,” Perry said.
The family is now hoping a renewed interest in the investigation will lead the suspect or someone who knows them to come forward.
“While this driver is potentially enjoying their life, Chris is in a casket for his 27th birthday,” Perry said.
Perry, Jogi, Frazier and Chris’ mother Carolyn Jackson Wasserman traveled from California to Denver Monday. They plan to hold a press conference at noon on Tuesday outside the Denver Police Crime Lab (1371 Cherokee St, Denver) to share updates on the case and their efforts to seek justice.
Denver police also plan to release additional details in the case Tuesday afternoon.