New Jersey police lieutenant struck, killed while helping motorist on way to work: Police

PHOTO: Lt. Christopher Robateau, a Jersey City, New Jersey, police lieutenant, was hit and killed while helping a motorist on his way to work, Jan. 5, 2018.PlayWABC
WATCH Police lieutenant struck, killed while helping motorist on way to work

One day after a storm tore through the Northeast, covering New Jersey roadways with snow, a Jersey City, New Jersey, police lieutenant was hit and killed while helping a motorist on his way to work, police said.

Lt. Christopher Robateau -- a more than 20-year veteran -- was in his vehicle this morning when he was hit by a truck, Jersey City Police Chief Michael Kelly said. Robateau stepped out to help the truck driver, and that's when he was struck and killed by another vehicle, Kelly said.

Robateau died a "hero," Kelly said at a news conference. "His instincts are always to help and save others and that is what he was doing when he was struck."

ABC station WABC-TV in New York said the driver that hit the lieutenant on the New Jersey Turnpike in Newark stopped at the scene and is cooperating.

Kelly said Robateau, a father, had "rare combination" of personal and professional skills and was "truly a role model."

He was "one of our most active police officers" from the time he entered the department in 1994 and "won almost every award that a police officer could win," Kelly said. Robateau "came to work every day and worked his hardest to make sure citizens of this city were safe."

He was also "an extraordinary family man," Kelly said. "Here's an active police officer who put many, many hours in beyond his eight-hour work tour, and then went home to be an unbelievable father."

Condolences have poured in following the deadly crash.