The Nassau County Police Department spent last week attempting to find Joshua Roston, 33, who was allegedly involved in a gas station hit-and-run in South Hempstead on Jan. 14, killing a Levittown man.
Cemal Dagdeviren, 59, was killed at a Pit Stop gas station where he worked as a manager. Surveillance footage shows Dagdeviren attempting to stop Roston from driving away without paying as his dark-colored GMC Yukon rammed into him.
“He attempts to steal $22 worth of fuel,” Det. Lt. Stephen Fitzpatrick said at a news conference at the department’s Mineola headquarters after the incident. “He then goes to exit the gas station. One of the managers of this gas station stepped in front of the vehicle, and tried to stop him from leaving. This male then intentionally ran this male victim over, causing his death.”
Roston turned himself in Thursday night in Pennsylvania, with Nassau County officials confirming his arrest on Friday afternoon.
The SUV Roston was driving did not have plates or inspection stickers, making the gas station attendant nervous. Roston was then asked to pay inside, where he gave a counterfeit credit card, police explained. From there, he told the gas station clerk that he didn’t have the cash to pay the $22 fuel bill. But Fitzpatrick said he displayed a $50 bill.
“When it became apparent that he did not have any money or did not have any means to pay for the fuel, he tried to get out and make his way into the car and flee out of there,” Fitzpatrick said.
That’s when Dagdeviren ran in front of the SUV to stop him. But Roston refused to stop, running the Levittown native over and speeding away from the scene, causing a multi-day search for the suspect.
Dagdeviren was transported to South Nassau Communities Hospital, where he was later pronounced dead. His funeral was held on Wednesday.
Police Commissioner Patrick Ryder said Roston was arrested twice in early January, along with an April 2018 incident for allegedly stealing $30 worth of gas.
“His face was out there,” Nassau County Executive Laura Curran said. “He will pay for this heinous crime.”