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Driver, 70, arrested in hit-and-run death of rapper Nicki Minaj's father

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Posted at 1:12 PM, Feb 17, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-17 13:12:59-05

MINEOLA, N.Y. — Police arrested the driver allegedly involved in the fatal hit-and-run of rapper Nicki Minaj’s father, authorities announced Wednesday.

Charles Polevich, 70, turned himself in to police Wednesday and faces charges of leaving the scene of an accident with a fatality and tampering with evidence, according to Detective Lt. Stephen Fitzpatrick.

Polevich, a Guam resident with a house in Mineola, does not have any criminal history, Fitzpatrick said.

Robert Maraj was walking along a road in Mineola on Long Island at 6:15 p.m. Friday when he was hit by a white vehicle, Nassau County police said.

Maraj was taken to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead Saturday.

Polevich stopped the vehicle after striking Maraj, but fled shortly after, the detective said.

According to Fitzpatrick, officers were able to track Polevich’s vehicle, a 1992 Volvo Series 740 Station Wagon, which was covered up in an attempt to prevent police from discovering the car.

Minaj, 38, was born Onika Tanya Maraj in Trinidad and was raised in the New York City borough of Queens. She has not made any public statement about her father's death.

Associated Press contributed to this report.