Hinckley hit-and-run witness speaks out - FOX 29 News Philadelphia | WTXF-TV

Hinckley hit-and-run witness speaks out

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  • Army veteran severely injured in Hinckley hit-and-run on I-35

    Army veteran hit, severely injured on I-35 in Hinckley

    Thursday, June 20 2013 10:25 AM EDT2013-06-20 14:25:12 GMT
    Minnesota State Patrol investigators are looking for a driver who hit a 24-year-old U.S. Army veteran and drove off as the victim was assisting another motorist on I-35 in Hinckley, Minn. on Monday night.
    Minnesota State Patrol investigators are looking for a driver who hit a 24-year-old U.S. Army veteran and drove off as the victim was assisting another motorist on I-35 in Hinckley, Minn. on Monday night.
DULUTH, Minn. (KMSP) -

Minnesota State Patrol investigators are still looking for the hit-and-run driver who left an Army veteran fighting for his life in a Duluth hospital, and the man who saw the crash is speaking out, hoping the culprit will be caught.

Chaz Paulson is understandably shaken up by what he saw on Monday night. A man who has been his friend since fourth grade was run down near an entrance ramp on Interstate 35 in Hinckley.

"It's real messed up what happened to him," Paulson said.

Paulson told FOX 9 News he had a feeling something would go wrong when he agreed to help Trevor Langlois pick up a used truck he'd just bought -- but he never imagined the buddy he used to play paintball with would be left in the street after being struck by a car.

"The truck just moved dramatically," Paulson recalled. "I just heard the crash, went to go look -- didn't see or hear him."

Paulson said the two were heading back home when the truck Langlois bought began to have mechanical problems. They pulled over on the shoulder and Langlois was walking up to Paulson's driver's side window when he was hit by a passing motorist.

"At first, I didn't realize what had happened until I looked forward through the windshield and saw the car going by and saw the debris fly out from the car," Paulson said.

Paulson said he could only provide a vague description of the car because the driver of the dark-colored Ford F-150 only tapped the brakes a quarter mile up the road and then took off. Soon, he became more focused on helping his gravely injured friend.

"I was scared because at first, he wasn't breathing," Paulson said. "I called 911 and by the time police showed up, he just started gasping for air."

Langlois was flown to a Essentia Hospital in Duluth, where he remains in critical condition in the intensive care unit while his family keeps watch nearby.

"He's a fighter and he's always been a fighter through anything," Katie Langlois, Trevor's wife, told FOX 9 News.

Paulson said he hopes the driver will either come forward or someone else will help identify the person who left a husband and father of a 2-year-old son for dead -- and he hopes his friend ultimately survives the ordeal.

"I hope the person gets caught and I hope he pulls through," he said.

Investigators say the suspect's car is believed to be model 2010 or newer, likely an XTL package or higher. The vehicle should have moderate to heavy damage on the right side of the front bumper, hood and quarter-panel area. The passenger side mirror should be partially missing and the vehicle may also have white paint on the impact area. The right headlight may also be cracked.

Anyone with information is asked to call Minnesota State Patrol in Duluth at 218-320-6127.

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