HOWELL — The death of a pedestrian on Route 9 in Monmouth County early Saturday morning is at least the third fatal incident this week involving people crossing New Jersey roads.

A 53-year-old Freehold man was fatally struck by a Mini Cooper on the southbound side of Route 9 at New Friendship Road in Howell around 12:30 a.m., according to the Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office. The man, whose identity was not disclosed Saturday, was pronounced dead at the scene at 1:08 a.m.

A passing Howell police officer saw debris and a backpack in the roadway and found the driver of a  Mini Cooper, Juanean Perez, 21, of Jackson in the parking lot of a nearby Walmart. Howell Police said she was charged with suspected operation while under the influence and was released.

The road was closed in both directions until about 7 a.m. for an investigation and clean up.

Howell Township Police Department via Facebook

Howell Police and the Prosecutor's Office are investigating the crash along with the Monmouth County Serious Collision Analysis Response Team (SCART).

The Prosecutor's Office asked any witnesses to the crash to contact their office at 800-533-7443 or Howell Police at 732-938-4575

The road is three lanes in each direction with a jersey barrier in the middle. The intersection is controlled by a traffic light. It is in front of the Friendship Plaza shopping center, which includes a ShopRite. There are also two fast food restaurants at the intersection.

There was also a crash on Texas Road and Englishtown Road in Old Bridge early Saturday morning. Old Bridge police have not yet returned a message for additional information.

Two other accidents this week were fatal.

Thursday morning, a man was struck after getting off an NJ Transit bus on Route 38 in Cherry Hill. Police told the Courier-Post the man was struck on the eastbound side  crossing against a red light and was thrown onto the westbound lanes, where two more vehicles hit him.

A 44-year-old woman and a 54-year-old man were hit on Friday morning crossing St. George's Avenue (Route 27). The woman died while the man was hospitalized with serious injuries at University Hospital in Newark. Police said the couple had recently moved to Linden.

Contact reporter Dan Alexander at Dan.Alexander@townsquaremedia.com or via Twitter @DanAlexanderNJ.

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