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DV Pilot police & fire

Year passes since unsolved hit and run injures Washington Township officer

Photo Credit: Cliffview Pilot File Photo

UPDATE: Despite a $10,000 reward, a year has passed with no breaks in the case of a Washington Township police officer who was knocked down by a speeding SUV on a dark street.

Officer Heather Castronova’s anniversary of sorts went largely unnoticed, in large part because of the recent tragedies that befell Waldwick Police Officer Christopher Goodell, killed by a tractor-trailer driver while on a radar enforcement detail, and Jersey City rookie Officer Melvin Santiago, who was murdered by a mad gunman.

Both deaths came nearly three months after a drunk driver critically injured Bergen County Police Officer Daniel Breslin when his department SUV was rammed from behind on Route 46 in Lodi.

This past weekend, another overnight incident raised concern when a drunk driver crashed his vehicle into a DWI checkpoint trailer on Route 46, injuring an Elmwood Park police officer.

Castronova said she still has to deal with back pain from her incident.

“I have good days and bad days, but it could always be worse,” she told CLIFFVIEW PILOT . “I’m very lucky considering what the law enforcement community has suffered recently.”

Castronova said she was walking back to her police car after issuing a summons to a car on Fern Street early last July 20 when a dark-colored vehicle pulled around the corner too fast and clipped her, then took off.

The 12-year veteran, a former Bergen County Police Department dispatcher who served in the U.S. Marine Corps, was released from the hospital the next day.

The first reward was posted within hours of the incident, and more contributions quickly followed.

The Washington Township Knights of Columbus, Hillsdale PBA Local 207, Bergen County PBA Local 49, Bergen County PBA Conference, Washington Township Police Department and PBA Local 206 have all kicked in.

Although more than a year has passed, Castronova said she’s not giving up hope.

“Maybe someone told someone,” she said.

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