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Recent Student Dead in Washington Park Hit-and-Run

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A recent University at Albany student, Rajine Martinez, 21, was killed in a hit-and-run crash early Saturday morning in Washington Park.

Around 4 a.m., Martinez was hit near New Scotland Avenue on Washington Park Road by what witnesses describe as an SUV.

It is still unclear why she was alone in the park at that time.

When police arrived, she was found lying in the street. At that point, witnesses say the suspect had long fled the scene.

She was later pronounced dead at Albany Medical Center Hospital.

Albany Police have reported a vehicle under suspicion. However, the incident is still under investigation.

Martinez was a psychology major. According to Karl Luntta, UAlbany director of media relations, she was most recently registered at the university last spring.

Over winter break last year, Keri Williams, a junior chemistry major, was first introduced to Martinez at a downtown residence hall. The two dorm neighbors, Williams, stuck on campus for a nearby internship, and Martinez, being close to her job at the time, bonded over “Grey’s Anatomy.”

“It’s just that she was such a lovely person,” said Williams. “We met on Alumni Quad and I remember it like it was yesterday.”

In recent years, Martinez assisted children at two summer camps, Camp Scully, and more recently, Camp Wilton.

Mariah Hawsey knew Martinez from Camp Scully since 2007. Working beside her, she started growing closer with Martinez three years ago.

“She was a really sweet person,” Hawsey said. “The kids really loved her, too. She was always positive and fun to be around.”

Prior to attending UAlbany, Martinez attended Ravena-Coeymans High School. By the end of her high school career, she earned the Albany City Lodge No. 540 Knights of Pythias Achievement and had her artwork presented at a Columbia-Greene Community College show.

Tamas Beverly, a UAlbany sophomore business major and Ravena-Coeymans alumnus, remembers Martinez from his childhood. Back then, they both attended services at Riverview Missionary Baptist Church in Coeymans.

“She had a very beautiful smile,” he said.

Albany Police ask for anyone with information about the crash to reach 518-462-8039.

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