New Brunswick vice principal killed by hit-and-run drag racers, cops say
PISCATAWAY — A vice principal at New Brunswick High School was killed by drag racers as he crossed the street on Saturday night, according to police.
Tyrone Harrison, 49, was pronounced dead at the scene on Stelton Road near Ethel Avenue around 9:17 p.m., according to Middlesex County Prosecutor Andrew C. Carey. The prosecutor said police are looking for information about people who may have been drag racing in the area at the time.
The driver of the car believed to have hit Harrison fled the scene, Carey said. Harrison, a resident of the Somerset section of Franklin, was walking from the Edison train station to a relative's house, according to Carey. The station is approximately a mile from the scene of the crash.
Investigators determined "multiple vehicles" were drag racing at the time of the crash. The people involved are believed to be members of the "78 Imports," a car club that has been known to drag race on public roads. The car that struck Harrison was identified as a 2003 Honda Accord, according to Carey, who said the driver fled the scene before police arrived.
"Middlesex County currently has the highest rate of fatal car crashes in New Jersey," Carey said. "Law enforcement is working diligently every day to lower the number of these fatalities. This tragic death was entirely preventable and unnecessary."
Carey called drag racing on public roads "dangerous and irresponsible."
On his Facebook page, Harrison lists his alma mater as The Ohio State University. A copy of the school's football roster in 1988 listed Harrison as a sophomore fullback on the team that year. According to state pension records Harrison has almost 24 years experience working for the district.
Superintendent Aubrey Johnson called it a "difficult time throughout New Brunswick Schools," according to MyCentralJersey.com. Johnson said grief counselors were being made available to students, faculty and staff. She told NBC New York that Harrison was a "staple here in New Brunswick, for 17 years as a teacher." New Brunswick High School principal Ken Redler told the station that Harrison was "the most peaceful man in the world."
Harrison's death came the same weekend as that of Dr. Jeffrey Huguenin, principal of Catena Elementary School in Freehold Township. Huguenin died on Sunday from an undisclosed cause of death.