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Police identify driver killed in early Saturday morning crash

The 21-year-old driver who was killed when his sport-utility vehicle crashed while being chased by Buffalo police early Saturday morning has been identified as Eddie Hernandez Jr., from the Bronx.

Two passengers were injured when the 2007 Jeep Liberty crashed at about 2 a.m. Saturday at Michigan Avenue and East North Street.

The vehicle had sped up and pulled away when officers tried to pull it over, police spokesman Michael DeGeorge said. There were reports that the Jeep had been involved in several hit-and-run incidents. A police source said it had sideswiped other vehicles.

The pursuit ended when the SUV struck a utility pole and overturned, coming to rest on its passenger side.

DeGeorge said Hernandez died a short time later. The passengers, who were taken to Erie County Medical Center, apparently suffered non-life-threatening injuries, he added.