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Last updated: February 16. 2013 2:27PM - 711 Views

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PLYMOUTH TWP. - An elderly man struck by a vehicle on state Route 11 has died, the third hit and run fatality in the area in recent weeks.

Richard Stadts, 73, of West Nanticoke, died at Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center, Plains Township, at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday, Luzerne County Acting Coroner William Lisman said.

Stadts was riding a bicycle in the area of Stookey's Restaurant when he was struck by a vehicle at about 9:45 p.m. Tuesday, state police Trooper Martin Connors said.

A passing motorist that witnessed a vehicle swerve helped state police track down a teenager that allegedly struck Stadts.

A witness driving in another vehicle observed a car swerve not knowing Stadts had been struck. The witness wrote down the license plate number out of concern when the two vehicles stopped at a red traffic signal at state Route 29, Connors said.

Connors said the witness later drove through the same area seeing paramedics and state police.

"He stopped and provides information that led us to this individual," Connors said.

State police went to a residence in Hunlock Township detaining Matthew Perkins.

Perkins, 19, was later released.

Connors said there was physical evidence at the scene where Stadts was struck.

Stadts was transported to Geisinger Wyoming Valley where he died. He was wearing a reflective vest and had lights on his bicycle when he was struck.

Stadts is the third person to die in hit and run crashes in recent weeks.

Rebecca McCallick, 19, died after being struck by a vehicle in front of her apartment at 199 Hazle Ave., Wilkes-Barre, on July 24.

Wilkes-Barre police are searching for a vehicle of interest, a dark colored pickup truck.

City police charged Danielle Castrignano, 20, of Kingston, with leaving the scene after striking Corey Ryan, 20, at South River and West Northampton streets, on June 15.

Ryan, who was stricken to a wheelchair, died June 29 from injuries sustained in the crash.

Castrignano surrendered to authorities on June 16. She told police she believed she struck a shopping cart, according to the criminal complaint.
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