Hit-and-run victim was special needs student; deputies search for suspect

      Forrest Carlton (provided)

      WEST ASHLEY, S.C. (WCIV) -- Katie Clair's eyes lit up as she remembered the joy of 22-year old Forrest Carlton.{}

      "It was just so contagious," Clair said. "His beautiful smile. It all is so fond in my memory and I wish people could see that."

      Clair taught Carlton at West Ashley High School, where he was a special needs student. Clair says Carlton was kind-hearted and inquisitive.

      "He had such a charismatic personality. By far, I think his fondest memory was his deep belly laugh, when something was funny. He would be the first one to crack up," said Clair.{}

      Early Sunday morning, officials say Carlton was killed in a hit and run.{}

      Officials with the Charleston County Sheriff's Office said deputies responded to the area between Plainview Drive and Parsonage Road, and Ashley River Road at about 3:05 a.m. after a driver called saying there was a man lying in the road.

      Officials said the suspect's vehicle left the scene without stopping.

      Monday, Charleston County deputies said the car believed to have been involved in the accident had been found with severe front end damage at Middleton Cove Apartments, 2247 Ashley River Road, with a tan automobile cover of it.{}

      The vehicle was described as a black Dodge Charger, however officials said no suspect is in custody.

      Clair pleaded that there be justice on Carlton's behalf.{}

      "Please put a value on human life," Clair said. "This is somebody's son. This is somebody's friend. This was a member of our community. And, he was young. He was 22 and he had so much life in him."

      {}If you have any information, you are asked to call Crime Stoppers at 554-1111.