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Essex Prosecutor: DWI Driver Flees After Crashing Into Tree With Twin Brother On The Hood

Joe Dattoli is recovering after his twin brother, Anthony Dattoli, crashed his car into a tree while he was on the hood, prosecutors say.
Joe Dattoli is recovering after his twin brother, Anthony Dattoli, crashed his car into a tree while he was on the hood, prosecutors say. Photo Credit: Essex County Sheriff's Office (inset)/GoFundMe photo

An 18-year-old North Jersey man lost his leg after authorities said his drunk twin brother drove into a tree with him on the hood of the car, his sister said.

Anthony Dattoli of West Caldwell surrendered with his lawyer on Monday in connection with the June 27 hit-and-run crash that severely injured Joseph Dattoli, authorities said.

Anthony Dattoli "was intoxicated and drove with his twin brother on the hood of his vehicle, ultimately crashing into a tree and leaving his brother with life-altering injuries," Acting Essex County Prosecutor Theodore N. Stephens II and West Caldwell Police Chief Dennis A. Capriglione Jr. said in a joint statement.

Anthony remained held Tuesday in the Essex County Jail pending a first appearance in Central Judicial Processing Court in Newark on charges of aggravated assault, vehicular aggravated assault while intoxicated in a school zone, leaving the scene of an accident and endangering an injured victim, records show.

Joseph Dattoli needs a prosthetic leg and nearly a dozen surgeries, their sister, Emma, wrote in a GoFundMe campaign.

"My brother Joseph is the strongest boy I have ever gotten graced with meeting, let alone spending my whole childhood with him," she noted. 

"He is my backbone, my best friend, and my biggest supporter," Emma added. "He just graduated high school a few days ago and was ready to go to college at Kean and move out."

"Joe is only 18 years old, and he has so much life yet to live, so many places to see, and so much more to experience," the GoFundMe campaign says. "It is not his time to get taken due to impaired driving."

As of Tuesday afternoon, the page had raised more than $123,000. 

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