Local News

Murder Added to Charges in Johnston Hit-and-Run Case

Posted April 17, 2008

— State troopers Thursday added murder to the list of charges against the man accused of driving a car that struck a 7-year-old boy in a Johnston County hit-and-run Sunday night.

Hipolito Hernandez, 30, of Parkertown Road in Four Oaks, remained in the Johnston County Jail Thursday on a $1 million bond.

State troopers said Marcus Lassiter, 7, had been playing in his grandmother's front yard and was trying to cross Heath Road when a car driven by Hernandez struck him.

The child’s leg was broken, and he had brain damage. His family decided to remove him from life support, and he died Monday night.

A visitation is scheduled for Friday from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. at First Missionary Baptist Church in Clayton. His funeral is Saturday at 2:30 p.m. at Johnston Piney Grove Church in Clayton.

Lassiter's first-grade classmates at Cooper Elementary School in Clayton have made about 400 necklaces to sell to help pay for his hospital expenses and funeral costs.

"I think it's helping them a lot (to cope with Lassiter's death)," their teacher, Kate Mundt, said. "Because it's a positive thing. They're enjoying what their doing."

The class is no longer accepting orders but is still accepting donations on behalf of Lassiter's family.

Checks made payable to his mother, Sheila Lassiter, can be sent to: Marcus Lassiter Donation Fund, c/o Cooper Elementary School, 849 North Mial St., Clayton, N.C. 27520.


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  • RNM Apr 18, 2008

    Too bad he won't get life in a Mexican jail. That would be a far more appropriate punishment, and our tax dollars wouldn't have to keep him clothed and fed.

  • leo-nc Apr 17, 2008

    "I too am confused as to why they didn't charge him with 1st degree murder I thought that anytime you kill someone while commiting a felony that you can be charged with first degree murder and I know dwi is a felony.."

    Because the law doesn't allow him to be charged with 1st degree murder with this offense.

  • nuke Apr 17, 2008

    Folks,have you noticed the escalation of offenses committed by hispanics? I suspect that they have a contempt for the law due to breaking the law to get to the US. We need to get a handle on the illegal aliens that are breaking the laws or face the consequences that the native indians suffered due to allowing immigrants to invade their country.

  • Adelinthe Apr 17, 2008

    Uhmmm, if the police recognized him, and if he's been arrested before for speeding and reckless driving, why are they confused about his real name now???

    God bless.

    Rev. RB

  • wolfpackfan15 Apr 17, 2008

    I think this is how it should be, he got behind the wheel drunk, and he killed someone. He should be in jail on NO bond if you ask me. I mean murder, driving while intoxicated, possesion of a stolen vehicle, being here illegally, and other charges... Yep, I'd say he deserves jail time with NO bond. What's worse, he probably doesn't even feel guilty for what he did. My thoughts and prayers are with the 7-year old's family. God Bless.

  • diver Apr 17, 2008

    Whats the point of deportation. He'll just be back in 6 months anyway. Put him in prison and I'll be more than happy for my taxes to help keep him there instead of sneaking back into the U.S. and doing it again

  • JAFOinWF Apr 17, 2008

    We need to flood the legislators and governors and president's email and phone systems with our outrage instead of WRAL's. We need to make them care because they do not now.

  • MadBiker Apr 17, 2008

    With all those charges, he's going to be facing some serious probation! Also, I think a guy with "multiple aliases and birth dates" should be deported on that evidence alone. AFTER he serves his probation, of course!)

  • WRALwontdeletemyaccount Apr 17, 2008

    "try to forgive this troubled young man"

    No. That's not appropriate at this time.

  • Adelinthe Apr 17, 2008

    As well it should be, and because he was driving drunk, it should be a charge of 1st degree murder. You get behind the wheel drunk, anything that happens should be tried to the nth degree.

    Praying for the families of both.

    God bless.

    Rev. RB