California Highway Patrol officers say a teen was riding his bicycle along Watt Avenue near Whitney Avenue when a dark-colored minivan or SUV hit him around 5 a.m.
The car fled the scene with the boy still on the hood, officers said.
"We heard somebody yelling, 'Help me! Help me! You just hit somebody, stop, stop, stop,'" witness Julie Miles said.
The boy was found in the front yard of a nearby home, unconscious and unresponsive. He was taken to the hospital where he ultimately died.
Officers are asking anyone who may have witnessed the crash to contact the CHP North Sacramento office.
Thursday, the teen's family gathered to mourn his loss.
“We thank everybody for all the support, you know, everybody reaching out, calls, texts, prayers," the teen's aunt, Kindra Dodson, told FOX40.
Dodson identified the teen as 14-year-old DeSean Rowe-Manns. He was a student at nearby Mira Loma High School.
"He was a very charismatic child," Dodson said. "Very funny, very outgoing, very popular."
DeSean's stepfather told FOX40 he was riding a friend’s bike that morning, which may have been too large for him and that DeSean was not wearing a helmet.
DeSean tried to pop a wheelie up onto the sidewalk when his stepfather says he fell backward toward Watt Avenue. That's when he was hit.
“The only thing I can think of is that they were maybe a little inebriated," Dodson said. "Whatever the case may be, I just wish they would come forward."
A neighbor was able to catch a glimpse of the car on their home surveillance and told FOX40 another 20 minutes before police were able to find the teen.
“It’s shocking to the conscious that someone would hit another person, have that person come off their bicycle, be attached to their vehicle and drive away from the scene. And then dump the body on a lawn and do nothing to provide any care for the welfare of that person and just drive away," CHP Officer Mike Zerfas said.
CHP officers were back at the scene Thursday to slow traffic and look for evidence. Meanwhile, the teen's family just hopes someone saw that vehicle.
“We are at a loss for words right now. We have nothing. So if you’ve seen anything, if you know anything, heard anything, please step forward," Dodson said.