Father: 3-year-old hit-and-run victim loved to sing, dance

MESA, AZ - A Valley father is mourning the loss of his 3-year-old daughter who was killed in a hit-and-run accident in Mesa over the weekend.

Sgt. Efren Carmona said Jaqueline Monroe jumped out of the family car and ran into the parking lot as they returned home from church.

Read more: 3-year-old killed in hit-and-run at Mesa apartment complex

Genaro Mendoza is a single father trying to raise four kids. He said the loss of his daughter will haunt him for the rest of his life.

"It's a pain that I can't describe. That I don't wish on anyone. It's very painful to lose a child," he said.

Mendoza said his daughter was the life of the party.

"She was very happy. She liked to listen to music and to dance," he said.

Authorities believe the suspect was driving a white suburban. Several hours into the investigation, a car matching the vehicle's description showed up back at the apartment.

Read more: SUV to be searched in Mesa hit-and-run case

Police contacted the owner of the vehicle and the owner went down to the station for an interview. Eventually the "person of interest" asked for a lawyer and police did not have probable cause to make an arrest.

Authorities have received a search warrant on the SUV and hope that search provides more clues that could lead to an arrest.

The family has set up a fund at Wells Fargo.

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