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‘The loss is difficult:’ DPW worker dies after hit-and-run crash near 17th and Vine

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Crash involving Milwaukee DPW truck, car near 17th and Vine

MILWAUKEE — Milwaukee police have a subject in custody after a fatal hit-and-run crash that killed a city DPW worker near 17th and Vine on Friday morning, Feb. 8.

Officials say around 8:15 a.m., 54-year-old Bryan Rodriguez was filling potholes in the neighborhood. He was standing behind his DPW truck — when a car struck him and then pushed into the truck. Rodriguez was taken to a hospital where he later died from his injuries.

The driver of the striking vehicle jumped out of the car and left the scene, police say. But officials say a subject has been taken into custody.

Crash involving Milwaukee DPW truck, car near 17th and Vine

Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett

“Bryan Rodriguez started his career with the city in June of 2017 as a city laborer. He demonstrated great flexibility and earned promotions,” said Mayor Tom Barrett. “The loss is difficult for his family, his wife, children — the whole DPW team and the entire City of Milwaukee.”

The mayor indicated police are seeking witnesses to this crash. If you were at all in the area of 17th and Vine around 8:15 a.m., you are urged to call 414-935-7360. Barrett also urged all drivers in the city to slow down, be cautious and pay attention to the road.”

“This is the second tragedy in essentially three days. The people who serve this city, whether they work for the police department, the Department of Public Works, the Department of Neighborhood Services, the fire department, the health department, the library — interface with the public on a daily basis,” Mayor Barrett said. “Tragedies like this should remind all of us that our public servants, the people who are here to make this a better community, deserve our respect and support particularly in a time like this.”

Crash involving Milwaukee DPW truck, car near 17th and Vine

Jeff Polenske, Commissioner of the Milwaukee DPW

“This has been a rough day,” said Jeff Polenske, Commissioner of the Milwaukee DPW. “In these tough times, our condolences certainly go out to Bryan’s family, their friends, his co-workers. We’re all grieving as individuals for Bryan. We’re grieving as a department and we’re grieving as a city.”

Members of the Milwaukee Common Council issued the following joint statement on the passing of Bryan Rodriguez:

“It is with great sadness that we come together to mourn the passing of another public servant, senselessly killed while doing his job on the streets of Milwaukee.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with the family, friends and co-workers of our DPW brother. We grieve with all of you and offer our condolences to his DPW colleagues and his loved ones.”

The Milwaukee County Medical Examiner says an autopsy is scheduled for Monday.

Crash involving Milwaukee DPW truck, car near 17th and Vine

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