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Suspect in fatal hit-and-run held on $750,000 bond

Fernando Jasso Perez 23 is charged hit-and-run thkilled Tsering Dorjee Nov. 12.

Fernando Jasso Perez, 23, is charged in the hit-and-run that killed Tsering Dorjee on Nov. 12.

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Updated: November 15, 2012 3:28PM

After Fernando Jasso Perez’s Volkswagen Beetle struck Tsering Dorjee and Dakpa Jorden in Rogers Park Monday evening, Perez got out of his car and asked a passerby if he thought the victims would be OK, prosecutors say.

The passerby told Perez to wait for the police to arrive and “pray.” Instead, Perez drove away, a Cook County judge heard Thursday before ordering him held in lieu of $750,000 bail.

Perez, wearing a gray sweatshirt and blue jeans, appeared briefly in bond court at 26th and California. The 23-year-old man is charged with reckless homicide with a motor vehicle and failure to report an accident involving a death or injury. Dorjee, the vice president of the Rogers Park Chamber of Commerce, was killed in the hit-an-run incident, and Jorden, Dorjee’s brother-in-law, was injured but survived.

The incident occurred about 6 p.m., as Dorjee, 44, and Jorden, 46, were crossing a street near West Devon and North Maplewood avenues — on their way to a restaurant — when Perez struck them, prosecutors say.

In court Thursday, assistant state’s attorney Jamie Dickler told Judge Don Panarese Jr. that there were “multiple witnesses” to the hit-and-run. After Perez allegedly struck the victims, he stopped his car, got out and admitted to a witness that he’d hit the two men, Dickler said.

Perez then allegedly asked the witness if he thought the victims would be OK. That’s when the witness said he didn’t know and told Perez he “should wait for the police and pray,” Dickler said.

The witness then made “a delivery,” returned to the scene to see Perez get back in his car and drive away, Dickler said.

Another witness wrote down Perez’s license plate. Perez allegedly later removed his license plates from his car, Dickler said. Two days later, Perez turned himself in to police.

Dorjee received his U.S. citizenship last month after immigrating from India 18 years ago, said his wife, Kalsang Wangmo. He was the vice president of the Rogers Park Chamber of Commerce and worked for almost 14 years in the Cook County clerk’s office, she said.

Dorjee, the former president of the Chicago Tibetan Society, met his wife in India when they were 8 or 9. They had three sons ages 6, 3 and 1.

Dorjee was the clerk’s office 2008 Employee of the Year, according to a statement from David Orr.

“Tsering Dorjee was a much-loved member of my Vital Records staff since 1998,” Orr said in the statement. “Tsering was an incredibly kind soul and dedicated public servant. News of his death this morning brought his coworkers to tears. Our deepest condolences go to his wife, children and family. He will be dearly missed.”

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