A four-year-old girl was killed in an Amsterdam Avenue pedestrian accident on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. Police were pursuing an SUV that they had pulled over for reckless driving about 15 blocks to the south. The speeding SUV left the roadway around W. 97th Street and hit the child and the child’s grandmother on the sidewalk. Both victims were transported to Roosevelt-St. Luke’s hospital, where the child died and the grandmother is listed in critical condition.
The SUV driver was a 17-year-old boy who had a previous arrest record. The crash occurred around 8:15 PM.
Police had stopped the SUV around 82nd Street, but the driver sped away as police got out of their squad car and approached the vehicle. As the SUV approached 97th Street, the driver swerved onto the sidewalk and hit a building. He hit the child and her grandmother as he backed up to leave the sidewalk.
The driver tried to flee the scene of the accident but was apprehended.
This is not the first death or injury resulting from a police chase in recent years. This is the second such accident in the 24th Precinct since 2010. NYPD policy states that police should stop pursuing vehicles whenever the risk to officers and the public outweighs the danger to the community.
The driver crashed into Asian Fusion Cuisine, and glass from the restaurant’s plate glass window covered the child’s body as it lay on the sidewalk.
Source: Streetsblog.org, “Amidst Tabloid Attack on Bicycling, Another Child Killed By Reckless Motorist,” Jun. 5, 2013.