Man arrested, charged in hit-and-run crash that killed Vietnam veteran

NORRISTOWN, Pennsylvania (WPVI) -- Authorities arrested and charged a 31-year-old man on Wednesday in the hit-and-run death of a disabled Vietnam veteran in Norristown, Pennsylvania.

Detectives said Nemias Perez Severiano, of the 200 block of E. Main Street in Norristown, was driving at a high rate of speed on Sunday evening on Astor Street when he hit Samuel Jackson.

Police believe Jackson, a Marine who served in Vietnam, was exiting his car when he was hit.

Witnesses say Perez Severiano then sped away southbound on Astor Street.
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Marine Corps veteran killed in hit-and-run crash in Norristown: Corey Davis reports on Action News at Noon, November 11, 2019

Norristown police officers arrived on the scene within minutes of the accident, but Jackson was taken to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead a short time later.

Perez Severiano is charged with multiple offenses and was committed to the Montgomery County Correctional Center in place of $200,000 bail.

He told investigators that prior to the crash he was at a bar where he consumed 7 to 8 beers. He told detectives that when he left he was "a little drunk."

"He didn't have the courage to back up and get out of his car to at least look at my brother and say, 'Are you ok? Are you breathing, like I'm gonna get you help, call 911," said Samuel's sister, Peggy Jackson.

Investigators also said that Perez Severiano does not have a license to operate a motor vehicle.

The family says they had no idea where they were going to get a Marine Corps uniform for Jackson's funeral until VFW Post 1074 in Conshohocken put out a plea on Facebook. The response was seen by over 10,000 people. They now have the entire uniform thanks to donors.

"I'm getting calls from Mississippi, calls from North Carolina, and people trying to donate a uniform for him, so the outpouring has been great, so happy that we were able to give him the uniform," said Post Commander Walt Harkness.

And this is the part of the tragedy that is getting this family through this.

"Everybody has just been overwhelming with kindness, phone calls, texts, everything," said Peggy.

On Saturday, the family says, thanks to the public's outpouring of love, they will be celebrating Samuel Jackson's life, a proud Marine who truly believed in the Marine Corps motto: Semper Fi, meaning "always faithful."
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