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November 12, 2015

Suspect sought after body discovered off New Jersey Turnpike

Police: Victim ID'd, suffered from dementia

Police are searching for the driver who they believe struck and killed a man suffering from a mental illness off of the New Jersey Turnpike.

According to New Jersey State Police, 68-year-old Michael Shimanek of Granbury, Texas, has been identified as the body discovered in the embankment next to the northbound lanes at milepost 34.2 in Mount Laurel on Tuesday.

After an investigation, police say Shimanek was hit by a vehicle sometime between 3 a.m. and sunrise. They say the driver did not stop after hitting him.

Shimanek, who suffers from dementia, had wandered off from a nearby hotel he was staying at after a fire alarm forced the building to evacuate, authorities say. 

Police are stressing that because the Turnpike is a major roadway the driver could be from anywhere, and are asking anyone with information to call the Moorestown Station at 856-273-3228.