Driver not immediately charged after hitting and killing two kids in horrific Park Slope collision

Brooklyn Paper
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Prosecutors did not immediately charge a female motorist after she killed two children and sent two women — one pregnant — and a man to the hospital with injuries when she plowed her vehicle into the victims while they crossed Ninth Street at Fifth Avenue in Park Slope on Monday afternoon.

“This very tragic incident is under active investigation and we’re looking into all aspects of this case,” said a spokesman for District Attorney Eric Gonzalez.

Seizures struck the driver at the time of the deadly crash, according to a law-enforcement source, who said the medical condition is investigat­ors’ best explanation for the carnage.

The woman remained emotionless after the collision that claimed the lives of the 1-year-old boy and 4-year-old girl, firing off text messages on her phone as paramedics loaded her into an ambulance, witnesses claimed.

“She had no emotion, no emotion at all,” said bystander Jennifer Muniz, as she waited to speak with investigators following the horrific crash.

The driver was behind the wheel of a white Volvo sedan heading downhill on Ninth Street towards Fifth Avenue at 12:41 pm, when she allegedly ran a red light and slammed into the adults and children, according to witnesses.

Muniz claimed the motorist approached the intersection slowly, well after the light turned red, and then averted her eyes before accelerating into the victims making their way through the crosswalk.

“She just threw her head back, like she didn’t want to see what she was about to do,” said the eyewitness, who claimed she was about to cross the same intersection with a friend when the collision occurred.

The driver continued down Ninth Street towards Fourth Avenue following the crash, dragging one of the kids beneath her sedan, before colliding with a parked car halfway down the block, Muniz said.

Rescuers found the children dead at the scene, according to a Police Department spokesman, who said paramedics rushed the two women and man to Methodist Hospital in critical, but non-life-threatening, condition.

A mangled baby stroller lay beneath the Volvo’s right-rear wheel following the crash, which left a visible trail of gore on the road beside a sneaker.

Bystanders, meanwhile, rushed to the wounded adults’ and dying children’s aid, according to Muniz.

“Everybody was crying, yelling, screaming,” she recounted. “It looked like Armageddon.”

Another witness said she was working on the second floor of a gym that overlooks the intersection when she spotted bodies littering the street below and ran to the scene fearing someone she knew was hurt.

And upon her arrival, the good Samaritan said she was shocked to find her aunt — who lives in Red Hook — there, not as a victim, but comforting the pregnant woman as she lay injured in the street.

“The only person moving was the lady trying to get up to check on her child, and my aunt was telling her ‘please stay down, please stay down, please stay down,’ ” said Desireé Williams of her aunt, June Clark-Smith.

The pregnant woman with a wounded leg was covered in blood and drifting in and out of consciousness, according to Clark-Smith, who described the victim as hysterical with fear.

“She was crying, scared, everything. She was trying to get up,” said Clark-Smith. “She was like, ‘Oh god,’ you know?”

Surveillance footage the Brooklyn Paper obtained from a nearby insurance broker shows the 44-year-old driver — a Staten Island resident, according to reports — approach the intersection as the light turned red, then slowly inch forward as pedestrians and vehicles began to cross Ninth Street before speeding into the women and children during a break in traffic, sending their bodies flying to the pavement.

Numerous traffic-watchdog and cyclist-advocacy groups demanded Mayor DeBlasio improve safety on Ninth Street hours after the crash, with some organizing a rally at 8:30 am on Tuesday outside the nearby YMCA, where Hizzoner works out each morning.

In 2016, a motorist fatally struck a 41-year-old man at the intersection of Ninth Street and Fifth Avenue, where 33 others have suffered traffic-related injuries since 2010, according to data from the city’s Vision Zero initiative.

Reach reporter Colin Mixson at or by calling (718) 260-4505.
Updated 6:47 pm, March 7, 2018: This story was updated to note the driver was not immediately charged after the incident, and to include information on the fifth male victim and surveillance footage of the incident obtained by the Brooklyn Paper.
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Reasonable discourse

Ms. Me from Bay Ridge says:
Radio report just now: driver had, in the last 2 years, been cited 4 times for running red lights and 4 times for speeding through school zones.
March 6, 8:05 am
Jjm from Anywhere says:
Just saw this story last nite, so sad. God bless the children & prayers for the family.
March 6, 8:21 am
Vision Zero from Zero Vision says:
This woman should go to prison for the rest of her life!
March 6, 9:17 am
Chris from Sunset says:
This is the result of every spineless politician and DMV, every community board that cares more about one parking spot than children crossing safely, and every "resident" who gets up and talks back to Dept. of Transportation urban planners when they just don't like the data. This was preventable.
March 6, 9:23 am
Ms. Me says:
What accounts for her strangely calm demeanor? Tranquilizers,ambien,opiods? Pulled the medical card right away. Toxiology report should be interesting.
March 6, 10:26 am
Joe Blow from Bensonhurst says:
Sadly this driver, like countless others time after time, will probably get away with murder. I'm sure if this was in another state she would be in jail right now.
March 6, 10:42 am
Please from Brooklyn says:
Please don't refer to hitting a human or other animal as "plowing". This is a term sued for clearing snow, etc. and horrible to refer to the manner in which a life was lost.

Sensitivity, Please.
March 6, 2:45 pm
Gary from Fort Greene says:
Chris from Sunset: how was it preventable based on the factors you identified? Be specific.
March 6, 4:05 pm
Colin Mixson from Brooklyn Paper says:
Plow: Verb [ intrans. ] (esp. of a vehicle) move in a fast and uncontrolled manner : the car plowed into the side of a van.
March 6, 4:11 pm
Lacy from Gowanus says:
This woman should be still in lockup, her medical, driving, and mental health records scrutinized, and her drivers license revoked. New laws that do anything but make those things possible/more likely in the future are useless. Our progressive neighbors are unable to accept that some people will always do bad things, and THEY ought to be punished for it. Making life more onerous for the lawabiding is not the answer. But this is the Slope. So everyone will suffer.
March 6, 4:45 pm
Dock Oscar from Brooklyn says:
This is weird. Why did she wait at the intersection and then drive straight into the crosswalk where people were clearly crossing the street? Was it intentional? Very Sad. I can't imagine how that mother is doing right now. It always seems that the driver gets off no matter what.

Just today, a woman in front of me nearly was run over. Granted, she was crossing against the light on a small side street (bad), but the car that nearly ran her over was doing 45 MPH (and that's me trying not to exaggerate). Instead of slowing down, the car sped up, never slowing down, and inches away yelled, "Get out of the way."

Again, she was wrong crossing the street, but speeding up, not slowing down and very nearly running her over. And for what? To stop at the next red light?

People have to calm the —— down.
March 6, 5:29 pm
Joe Bloe from Bensonhurst says:
Far from a progressive problem, putting blame on every issue covered in this paper has nothing to do with progressives or liberals or democrats. Repeating the same ignorant diarrhea from the mouth doesn't make it true. By the way her medical, driving, and mental health records scrutinized, and her drivers license revoked is all being done. The driver looks like a Trump supporter anyway, just saying.
March 7, 10:20 am
Ben from Brooklyn says:
Vision Zero from Zero Vision says: you don't sound to be a very educate person i guess you been a school dropout.
March 7, 2:56 pm
Joe Bloe from Bensonhurst says:
Stop listening to the voices in yr head & get some toilet paper. Education = MBA Yale
March 7, 3:24 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Although I do give my condolences to what happened, I do feel that putting the blame on all motorists just because it will be seen as profiling. I'm sure no cyclist or pedestrian will like it if anyone said all of them were bad just for actions of a few. I won't argue that there was negligence on this one, but we do need to know the whole story and not from those who are just cherry picking at it just to suit their needs only.
March 7, 3:45 pm
Vision Zero from Zero Vision says:
Ben from Brooklyn,

Honest question, are you an ESL student or just really dumb? I've yet to see a coherent comment from you. You're embarrassing yourself and should be ashamed.
March 7, 8:53 pm
old time brooklyn from slope says:
truly a tragedy - no argument at all
sounds like a serious melt down with obvious tragic results
as many believe in the mc carthy kangaroo court of public opinion as opposed to courts of law now is the time for tears

and bw tal is correct a lot more than not
March 8, 11:05 am
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Of course I'm right. The vast majority of motorists do the right thing and don't mean to hurt anyone. But everyone makes mistakes. Therefore, the city should use data-proven solutions like pedestrian refuge islands and protected bike lanes to keep people out of harm's way. With good infrastructure, everyone, motorists, bikers, and pedestrians, will obey the laws and be safe.
March 8, 1:40 pm
Jay from Greenpoint says:
Vision Zero from Zero Vision: since you are a newcomer on this blog please acted professional.
March 8, 3:42 pm
Vision Zero from Zero Vision says:
Hey Jay from Greenpoint,

One, I'm not a newcomer. Two, "please acted professional."? Bwahahahahahhahaa!
Jay, please typinging comment professional.
What is with all the illiterate dullards commenting on this blog? Did any of you people graduate high school? You should be ashamed of yourselves. You're on a blog that auto-corrects your horrendous grammar for you.
Just how dumb &/or lazy are you?
March 8, 5:43 pm
Matt from Brooklyn says:
Vision Zero from Zero Vision, your better change your language and stop acting like a baby!!!!
March 9, 12:09 pm
Vision Zero from Zero Vision says:
Or what Matt from Brooklyn?
What are you gonna do?
Change my language? Sorry (not sorry) it's too sophisticated for your simple mind.
Below me, you dullard.
March 9, 6:16 pm

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