Motorcyclist killed in hit-and-run remembered as ‘everybody’s go-to guy’
Published Tuesday, June 26, 2018 3:26PM EDT Last Updated Tuesday, June 26, 2018 7:08PM EDT
A motorcyclist killed in a hit-and-run in Scarborough earlier this month is being remembered as a “great guy,” while the man accused in his death appeared in court.
The victim, who has been identified in court documents as 55-year-old Peter MacKenzie, has been described by his family as a loving husband and father.
“Peter was not only the breadwinner of the family, he was everybody’s go-to guy,” Caroline Grigjanis, a friend of the victim, told CTV News Toronto. He was everybody’s mechanic. He was everybody’s body guy. He would do household renovations. There was nothing Peter couldn’t do.”
Family said that MacKenzie was married for 32 years and had two children. He worked for the city.
According to Toronto police, the motorcyclist was heading west on St. Clair Avenue approaching Danforth Road in the early morning hours of June 14 when a blue Hyundai Accent turned into his path at the intersection.
It’s alleged the driver of the car stopped the vehicle before fleeing eastbound on Danforth Road. Police said the driver took off without helping the man or calling 911.
The motorcyclist died at the scene.
“It’s not a situation where this person did not know they hit somebody, they in fact recognized that they struck somebody,” Const. Clint Stibbe said at the time.
Grigjanis said that MacKenzie was only a few minutes away from his home when he was struck.
“He had just said goodbye to his wife and off he went,” she said. “That’s the infuriating part of it.”
Police made an arrest in the case on June 22. The vehicle involved in the collision has also been located.
A suspect identified as 30-year-old Khaled Saleh Bin Rbaa, of Toronto, was charged with criminal negligence causing death and failing to stop after an accident causing death.
He appeared briefly in court on Tuesday where he spoke to a lawyer with the help of an Arabic interpreter. A bail hearing was set for Friday.
The collision is one of several deadly hit-and-run incidents that have occurred in the Toronto-area recently, including one in the city’s Briar Hill area which left 50-year-old Isabel Soria dead.
Back on May 31, a cyclist was “very seriously injured” in the Swansea neighbourhood after she was struck by a dump truck that initially fled the scene. The driver and vehicle were apprehended a short time later.
Police are still searching for the driver of a red four-door car that they say witnessed the event. Anyone with information is being asked to contact authorities.