WILKES-BARRE – Luzerne County District Attorney Stefanie Salavantis said Saturday that she does not expect any charges to be filed in the hit-and-run death of 5-year-old Kevin Miller this weekend.
Salavantis said evidence processing of a car suspected of striking and killing the boy will take a while and it could be days before a decision to file charges is made.
On Friday, she identified Tom Letteer Jr. of Mack Street, Plains Township, as a person of interest in the death of the boy from Dallas. Letteer is cooperating with investigators and met with an attorney, she said.
Letteer told police he was driving his father's red, four-door Pontiac Grand Am the night of Dec. 21, but was not in Wilkes-Barre. The boy was struck on West North Street around 10:50 p.m. while holding the hand of his father after leaving a Christmas party at a house on the street. He was pronounced dead around 11:30 p.m. at Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center, Plains Township.
On Friday, police obtained a search warrant to seize the car. It was parked in the driveway of a wooded lot near the Letteer house.
The car appeared to have damage to the passenger side front. The vehicle also appeared to have a new headlight; the plastic on the passenger side headlight appeared clearer than the one on the driver's side.
Early in their investigation of the fatal incident, after reviewing still photo and video from city and private surveillance, police said the car involved was a red, four-door Pontiac Grand Am with a sun roof.
Police first spoke to Letteer on Dec. 23 after receiving information a car matching that description was parked in his driveway.
According to the affidavit of probable cause to support the search warrant, Letteer told police he was at a party in West Wyoming on Dec. 21 and drove from there to the house of his girlfriend Abigail Tarver in Pittston Township.
But a friend of Tarver contacted police on Dec. 29 with information about the fatal hit and run, according to the affidavit.
The unidentified friend said Tarver told her Letteer was drunk when he arrived at her house the night of the hit and run, according to the affidavit. The friend said Letteer told Tarver he hit someone and killed them and thought it was the boy reported in the news, the affidavit states.
Another witness told police he consumed several shots of liquor with Letteer at the party in West Wyoming, according to the affidavit. The witness said people at the party went to Rodano's restaurant on Public Square, the affidavit said.
The location of the hit and run is along the most direct route to the restaurant from West Wyoming, police said.
- Staff writer Jerry Lynott contributed to this report