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Cops Search For Driver Who Hit Well-Known Jeweler With Car In Queens

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- A jeweler to the stars was run over by a car and left for dead Sunday night in Queens, police said.

Aron Aranbayev, 40, known to his clients as "Eric," was being treated at Jamaica Hospital on Monday afternoon after, police say, a driver backed into him on purpose and took off, CBS2's Matt Kozar reported.

It happened Sunday Night in Forest Hills, Queens, on 71st Avenue, just feet from Aranbayev's home.

EMT's gloves and cotton balls could still be seen at the scene Monday afternoon, Kozar reported.

Police say the victim got into a fight with another man, who then came back with his car and hit him.

Investigators believe the fight may have been over a parking spot.

Aron Aranbayev
Home of jeweler Aron Aranbayev, according to neighbors. (Credit: CBS2)

"I'll tell you honestly, I was really shocked when I heard this," Aranbayev's sister told CBS2 while leaving the family's home. "I was bawling crying."

Neigbors say Aranbayev lives in the house with his wife and four children.

"He has a few kids," said a neighbor. "He has a newborn. Hopefully, they catch the guy."

Outside the family's jewelry store, Rafaello and Co. on West 47th Street in Manhattan, a sign informed customers the shop was closed due to a family emergency. Window diplay cases that hold jewels and diamonds were empty.

"He's a great guy," employee Mark Fernandez said. "By the grace of God, he'll pull through and everything will be OK."

"It's sad," said Darrell Dunn, another employee. "We're keeping him in our prayers."

Dunn said he's worked in the store for a decade. Aranbayev's customers have included music stars, professional athletes and other celebrities.

"We have Mayweather that comes to the store a lot; Busta Rhymes, which is a rapper; a lot of different basketball players," Dunn said.

The suspect was driving a dark Dodge Magnum, police said.

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