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CCTV aiding inquiries

James August was thought to be walking home to the Taratahi Hotel when he was hit by a car early on Friday morning. PHOTO/FILE

Hit and run victim still in serious condition
Police build a picture

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Hit and run victim, James August, remains in a critical condition in Wellington Hospital.

The 42-year-old was hit by a car on State Highway 2, just north of the Carterton township, in the early hours of last Friday.

Wairarapa Police believe August was injured between 1am and 2am.

CCTV footage of the area show a man walking along the west edge of the highway before the incident. Police said some vehicles have been identified.

August rented accommodation at the Taratahi Hotel, not far from where he was found in the middle of the road. Hotel owner Richard Skelley said it was most likely August was walking back to the hotel.

Everyone at the hotel was feeling “gloomy and worried”, he said.

Both he and August were checking out the weather reports on Thursday night just before 7pm to make a decision about whether or not to walk down to their favourite Carterton bar on its first night open after lockdown. August apparently signed into the bar about 15 minutes after Skelley.

“We don’t drink and drive,” Skelley said. “We have a few drinks in town and walk home. We were both excited to be going out.”

Skelley said he had a drink with August at the pub, before leaving for home just after 9pm.

“He’s a good guy and enjoyed his job in a logging gang,” Skelley said.

August had lived at the hotel for a year.

“He fits in well here and is liked here. He is chatty and friendly.”

Skelley understands from August’s family that he remains heavily sedated and in a serious condition.

Detective Senior Sergeant Barry Bysouth asked that any motorists who travelled through the area at that time and who might have seen August, who was wearing dark clothing and white striped scuff jandals, come forward about what they saw.

“We are hopeful the driver in this incident will do the right thing and come forward,” Bysouth said. “But we are also working hard to build a picture of what happened.

“If you were driving in the area between 1am and 1.45am, you may be able to add valuable information to our investigation and we are very keen to speak to you.”

Anyone with information can call 105 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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