A 21-year-old man with a suspended driver's license was charged Monday with two counts of criminal vehicular homicide in connection with the hit-and-run death of Roger Tetu, 78, of St. Paul.
Bail for Gregory J. Larsin, whose address is unknown, was set at $60,000 during his appearance in Ramsey County District Court.
The accident happened last Tuesday about 4:30 p.m. as Tetu was attempting to cross the street near his home at the intersection of Earl and Margaret streets.
Witnesses told police that Tetu was waiting on the northwest corner of the intersection and had waved a couple of cars to pass. One car stopped and waved for him to cross Earl Street, according to the criminal complaint. While Tetu crossed, the suspect's vehicle drove up behind the waiting cars, passed them and hit Tetu, one witness told police. Tetu died at the scene.
Another witness told police that she saw a purple Neon going north on Earl and there was so much damage to the windshield that the driver had to lean out the window to see, the complaint said. Police tracked the Neon, which several witnesses had described, to an alley a couple of blocks away.
The registered owner of the car met with police and said that she had sold it to Larsin, a close friend of her boyfriend, a few weeks earlier. She said that Larsin had called her about 4:37 p.m. and told her to report the car stolen, the charges said. Larsin called the woman while she was talking with police and told her again that she had to report the car stolen.
The woman's boyfriend told police that he had spoken with Larsin, who told him that "he had hit someone with the car," according to the charges.
Larsin turned himself in to police on Friday at 11:35 a.m. He has a lengthy criminal record in Ramsey and Washington counties, including three convictions for driving after license revocation and convictions for third-degree burglary, tampering with a motor vehicle, damage to property and felony theft.
Larsin has been on supervised release since leaving prison June 20. He had been serving a 15-month sentence for third-degree burglary.
Lora Pabst • 612-916-7212 Twitter: @lorapabst