A senior struck by an allegedly unlicensed motorist in an Upper East Side crosswalk this September has died from her injuries, according to NYPD’s monthly traffic crash report and WNYC’s Mean Streets project. Though the driver was ticketed for failure to yield, he was not charged under the new Vision Zero law that makes it a crime for motorists to harm pedestrians who have the right of way.
At around 9:47 on the morning of September 4, Kristin Rodriguez, 25, drove a minivan into 66-year-old Keiko Ohnishi as she walked with a cane across Madison Avenue at E. 98th Street, near Mount Sinai Hospital, the Daily News reported.
From the Post:
“[The van] hit her and she [flew] up and back down and he kept on going with her under him,” said Tracy Molloy, 39, who was waiting for the bus when she saw the horrific accident.
“He was trying to make the light like every New York City driver,” she said.
“He drove completely over her, over her legs. He must have felt the bump and heard people scream so he stopped,” said another witness Neud Clermont. “Blood was coming out of her ears.
“I walked over and started to pull her dress down, and the driver was panicking. He was like, ‘Oh my god, I didn’t see you!’” said Clermont.
Ohnishi was admitted to Mount Sinai in critical condition. She succumbed to her injuries, NYPD confirmed.
Rodriguez, whose van reportedly had North Carolina plates, was summonsed for failure to yield and charged with third degree aggravated unlicensed operation, according to NYPD and court records. He was not charged under city code Section 19-190, known as the Right of Way Law, which made it a misdemeanor to strike a pedestrian or cyclist who has the right of way. The law was adopted as part of a package of Vision Zero legislation intended to reduce traffic injuries and deaths.