Police ID 12-year-old boy fatally struck by Bergen County sheriff's patrol car

FAIR LAWN, New Jersey (WABC) -- A New Jersey town is in mourning after 12-year-old boy was killed by a Bergen County Sheriff's patrol car Sunday night.

Authorities say Christian Tawadros was walking with his brother and a group of friends on Route 208 in Fair Lawn when he was struck near an exit ramp shortly after 9 p.m.

The marked cruiser was driven by Michael Sansevere, a Bergen County sheriff's officer who was on patrol in the area.

Fair Lawn Superintendent Nicholas Norcia confirmed that Tawadros was a student at Thomas Jefferson Middle School.

"Our condolences go out to the student's family and friends," he said in a statement. "When our school community experiences a tragedy, such as the loss of a young life, it impacts all of us. During this difficult time, the school district will provide counseling support to any students or staff. As a father, this is the unthinkable and my heart goes out to the family. I ask anyone who reads this to hug your loved ones a little tighter today."

Sansevere was treated at a hospital for undisclosed reasons and later released. He has served with the sheriff's office for 12 years.

"(Sunday) evening at approximately 9:08 p.m., Bergen County Sheriff's Officer Michael Sansevere was on duty driving south bound on Route 208 and tragically struck a 12-year old male pedestrian attempting to cross the highway," Bergen County Sheriff Anthony Cureton said in a statement. "Officer Sansevere has been employed with the Bergen County Sheriff's Office for the past 12 years. As with all fatal accidents, the Bergen County Prosecutors Office has assumed responsibility of the investigation. The Bergen County Sheriff's Office with continue to provide support services to our officers and our hearts go out to the family during this difficult time."

The Bergen County Prosecutor's Office is leading the investigation.

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