Teen said he tried to grab friend before he was hit by SUV that took off

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CANTON, Ohio-- Nathan Katusin says he and Asher Lunsford were walking home from a friend's house at about 12:30 a.m. Friday when an SUV seemed to appear almost out of nowhere.

Katusin says they were walking along a well-lit area of 30th Street NW when they turned and saw the SUV moments before it hit Lunsford.

"And within a second it already hit him. I don't know, like time perception is weird because of how fast it happened, but that car was going at least like 35-40, in my eyes," said Katusin.

"I yelled Asher's name. He tried to leap and I tried to leap in front and grab him and he was like reaching up for me, but I got like his shirt and as soon as he got just out the way the car hit him in his lower right back."

Katusin says he went to help his friend who was laying unconscious in the street and for a moment the driver of the SUV stopped.

"I just seen him on the ground unconscious and I picked him up like by his shoulders and I was like, 'you hit him; you hit him. Come back,' and when I started getting up to go towards the car like three steps -- maybe even two steps they were already like 50 feet away going as fast as they could," said Katusin.

Lunsford was taken to a Canton hospital where he was admitted with a broken arm and other injuries described as non-life-threatening.

Police, meanwhile, say they were able to recover parts of the SUV which they are trying to use to identify what kind of a vehicle it was.

"There's no doubt that we believe he knew that he struck somebody," Said Canton Police Captain Steve Swank.

"We certainly understand that he has an explanation for how the accident occurred; however, leaving the scene with someone who is seriously injured does makes it worse," he added.

Katusin's mother, Holly, says at least two people stopped at the scene to help.

"There was another woman who randomly stopped and laid her hand on his chest and prayed, and Asher later conveyed he was like real appreciative that there are still people like that out there," she said.

But Nathan and his mother are shocked that the person who hit Lunsford did not have the same compassion.

"At that point, Asher would have been unconscious, so you see a lifeless body in the road and then take off; that, to me, is even more devastating. You have to know the gravity of what you just did," said Holly.

"I could never do that to someone; I would want to make sure they are OK," said Nathan.

Police are asking anyone who may have seen a white or silver SUV with front-end damage on Friday that was not there on Thursday to give them a call.

They are also asking the driver to voluntarily identify him or herself.