Family's message to hit and run driver who killed teen skateboarder: 'Why couldn't you stop?'
A teenager who died in a hit and run was hearing impaired and had a cochlear implant, it has been confirmed.
On Monday, the mother of 16-year-old Jacob Pakura issued a tearful plea for the driver who hit her son while he was skateboarding in west Auckland to come forward.
The teen died late on Saturday night after he was spotted unconscious on Rua Rd in New Lynn.
He was treated by emergency services but they could not save him.
Jacob's mother Esther Pakura said at a police press conference on Monday that Jacob was an "awesome" boy who loved his skateboard and had lots of friends.
"When this person hit Jacob and they left, they hit our family," she said.
"Jacob loved life, he loved living, and he took every opportunity that he got."
Jacob's sister Jasmin Pakura delivered the remainder of the statement after her mother became too emotional to speak.
"You took away everything, you took away his future, you took away memories, you took away everything this boy loved," she said.
"Please give our family some closure and come forward."
Waitemata police area commander Inspector Trevor Beggs said Jacob sustained "terrible injuries to his entire body" in the crash.
"To have left a young man lying in the road with catastrophic injuries like this is just simply unthinkable."
The driver would know "without a doubt" that they had hit somebody, Beggs said.
Their car would be seriously damaged and they had likely either hidden it or given it to a friend or colleague to get fixed.
"They may have also taken it to a garage to get repaired, and have given a different story to the panelbeater."
Beggs said the person might be acting in a strange or unusual way, with behaviour that was out of character.
"Anyone who has a family member, flatmate or friend like this is asked to contact us immediately. No piece of information is considered too small."
He said a number of people had described hearing a speeding car coming down the road just before midnight.
On Monday morning police were going door to door for witnesses to the crash.
Police asked anyone with CCTV cameras on their property to get in touch.
Jacob attended Hear For You sessions for deaf youth at The Hearing House in Greenlane.
Josh Foreman, one of Jacob's friends and mentors at the centre, said he was a charismatic and kind young man.
"Whenever I saw him at the Hear For You programme he was always just such a pleasure to be around."
Foreman was devastated to hear of Jacob's death.
"I hope the person responsible has the courage to step forward, in order to bring closure to his family, and that he may rest in peace."
Grieving family members gathered to place flowers at the scene on Rua Rd on Sunday.
One relative said the boy was skateboarding to a friend's house when he was struck by a car.
He said the teen was an "awesome guy, full of life".
On Monday afternoon, about 20 friends and family members gathered at the scene, where Reverend Fred Holloway led a short blessing.
Jacob's friend Otto Mafra said Jacob was a great skateboarder.
"He was something else, that kid."
Several residents on the street said they were woken by the noise of the crash.
One, who ran out of her house after hearing "a loud thud", said speeding vehicles were a problem in the area.
She had assisted in a previous car accident and said all the residents she knew had mentioned speeding vehicles, especially at night.
"We are all concerned with the traffic, it's common to have the sounds of screeching cars and many car accidents."
On Facebook friends and family have expressed their grief at the loss.
"Oh my cousin. Words can't express how I'm hurting right now," one woman said.
"To find out of your passing last night breaks my heart. It's not fair!!!"
Others expressed their disgust at the driver and hoped they would turn themselves into the police.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Waitakere Police on 09 837 9511 or phone Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.