INSET BELOW: Michael Russo
By Steven J. Smith
A car hit Michael Russo while he was riding his bicycle along A1A in the early evening of March 20, and authorities have yet to bring the perpetrator to justice.
According to information released by his lawyer, Craig Goldenfarb, Russo, 46, of Boynton Beach, was riding his bike on the shoulder near 610 N. Ocean Blvd. in Delray Beach when the car struck him, causing multiple injuries to his back, including a fractured tailbone.
“You think about how audacious this person can be, that they just hit you and left you on the side of the road,” Russo said.
Witnesses described the driver as a 20- to 25-year-old man with dark hair and sunglasses, driving a white 2006-2008 BMW 3-series, possibly with a Connecticut or Kentucky registration tag. A witness attempted to stand in the path of the car to stop it, but the driver sped off after the collision, Goldenfarb said.
A passenger-side mirror housing was recovered at the crash scene, which has been used by investigators to identify the make, model and year of the car.
“This driver knew he struck Mr. Russo and decided to flee anyway,” Goldenfarb said. “It may be because he was nervous or afraid that he hurt the man, or maybe because he simply thinks he can get away with this crime. Let’s find this man, and hold him accountable for his actions.”
Leaving the scene of an accident with injuries, Goldenfarb said, is a third-degree felony and, unfortunately, not uncommon in Palm Beach County.
“In June, a woman improperly crossing Okeechobee Boulevard in West Palm Beach was struck and killed by a hit-and-run driver,” he said. “Recently, a woman was in critical condition after being struck while walking in Boynton Beach by an unknown fleeing driver. That driver has since been identified.”
Even now, months after his accident, Russo has struggled to recover from his injuries and return to bicycling.
“I haven’t been able to get out and really go ride anymore,” he said. “I tried the other day and my back was killing me. It was too much. I had to bring the bike right back in the house.”
Goldenfarb said anyone with information about the driver or the car — which might have had damage and repair to the passenger side — is asked to call (561) 697-4440.