Wednesday, Aug. 22, 2007

No arrests in hit-and-run death

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The hit-and-run death of 17-year-old Esai Lopez is still being investigated, though it has been nearly three weeks since Montgomery County police found the car they believe killed him.

‘‘It’s still a very active case, but we have nothing to release as of yet,” county police spokeswoman Lucille Baur said Monday.

Lopez, who lived with his mother and brother outside Gaithersburg, was struck July 31 near the intersection of Redland and Muncaster Mill roads in Derwood. Lopez was taken to Baltimore Shock Trauma Center, where he died Aug. 1. Hailed by friends and family at a vigil Aug. 2, Lopez was set to start his senior year at Col. Zadok Magruder High School.

Witnesses to the accident told police that the car was a silver, late-model BMW. Responding to a tip Aug. 3, police found such a car — with front-end damage — in a parking garage in Greenbelt.

Because the investigation is ongoing, Baur would not say if the owner of the car has been identified or ruled out as a suspect.

‘‘We’re at the stage where we’ve worked very hard and we’re hoping that as a next step we’ll be able to announce that we’ve made an arrest,” she said.