Cabbie Rams Cyclist, Severs Woman’s Leg, Investigation Ongoing [Updated]

Police direct motorists through a red light on Sixth Avenue after this morning's crash. Photo: ##https://twitter.com/clarkebowling/status/369876145409638400/photo/1##@clarkebowling##

[Update: According to Cy Vance’s office, prosecutors are investigating this crash. We’ll have another post shortly.]

Reports say the cab driver who maimed a pedestrian in Midtown this morning was arguing with a bike messenger, whom he rammed with his cab before driving 15 to 20 feet on the sidewalk and severing a woman’s leg, but he probably won’t be charged with a crime.

The most seriously injured victim was identified by the Post and the Wall Street Journal as Sian Green, a tourist from England, whose age was reported as 22 and 23. Multiple reports say both her legs were mangled, with one severed below the knee. Green reportedly underwent surgery at Bellevue Hospital, where FDNY told us she was taken this morning.

The cyclist, who did not give his name, told reporters he was riding alongside the cab when the driver, attempting to make a left turn from Sixth Avenue onto 49th Street, became impatient. Here’s the cyclist as quoted by the Daily News:

“I told him to stop because I’m trying to go forward and people are crossing,” the cyclist said. “He loses his patience. He gets angry. He accelerates. Hits me.”

Here is the cyclist’s account in the Post:

“The hood of his car was so close to me, I could touch it. I told him to stop, he gets angry, he honks his horn, and he accelerates, and that’s it — I’m on the hood of the car, and the woman is under his car. He was in the bike lane, and he wanted to turn, but he didn’t want to wait. … I told him to calm down. … When I moved forward, that’s when he accelerated because I couldn’t escape him.”

Photos from the scene show the cyclist leaning against a police cruiser with a bandaged knee, and a bike with a bent rear wheel.

“We were crossing right in the middle of the crosswalk — we had the crossing signal — and as we were crossing with other pedestrians, the cab started to pull into the crosswalk,” said Jeffrey Hayes, of Massachusetts, to Fox News. “[There] was a man riding along this way on his bicycle with a backpack and he got picked up by the cabbie and was thrown up on the hood and up on his windshield. The cab really accelerated at a great speed. We couldn’t believe it. It smashed into the barrier here. There was a woman — maybe a few women — that were standing there. It just nailed her.”

The Post identified the cab driver as Mohammed Himon, who, despite undisputed accounts from multiple witnesses who say he caused this violent and life-altering crash, sources said “was likely to be slapped with multiple summonses … but not criminally charged.” Unnamed sources told DNAinfo Himon “has a clean driving record.”

A photo from the scene shows police directing motorists through red lights on Sixth Avenue after the crash. Wrote Streetsblog reader Clarke:

Just passed the scene … NYPD everywhere, waving traffic on 6th Ave through red lights as pedestrians are trying to cross, cabs failing to yield at crosswalks in front of cops just standing on the scene, cars blocking crosswalk on red light in front of cops. That’s why this story has no shock value at all … you can break traffic law literally in front of police officers and not even face a verbal warning.

  • Adrian

    Not that I completely disagree with you about telling drivers to share the road, etc., but I’ve seen lots of bicyclists doing all kinds of stupid, illegal things. Running red lights through intersections, turning when they aren’t allowed, etc. Drivers definitely need to be more aware, but it’s not exactly right to say that they are the only ones with any responsibility, just because they’re in the more massive vehicle, when riders are breaking all kinds of laws and riding dangerously.

  • Adrian

    Doesn’t matter. There’s such a thing as transferred intent. If I intend to punch you in the face, but you duck and I hit someone else, my intent to hit you transfers to that third person, as if I had intended to hit him all along.

    Here, it sounds like that cabbie committed battery (possibly aggravated, though I’m not sure about that), and his intent would cover both the cyclist he intended and succeeded in hitting, as well as the pedestrian he “accidentally” hit.

    On a somewhat tangentially related note, we need to get our collective shit together as a nation before we just stop getting foreign tourists and their money altogether. First the Australian who was murdered while running, and now this.

  • Andrew

    I’ve also seen drivers running red lights through intersections, turning when they aren’t allowed, etc. In far greater numbers than bicyclists, and causing far more damage than bicyclists.

  • Guest

    As someone who cycles, advocates and has seen cyclists do the wrong thing, I hear you. But, while cyclists can (and sometimes do) hurt people, motorists do it a heck of a lot more and with more horrendous results. In addition, as a society, we are inured to the actions of motorists, even when it’s illegal and dangerous. When pedestrians have the “walk”, they have the right of way in the crosswalk over turning cars. Yet, turning cars routinely beep and bully their way in peds’ path. Motorists that do yield right of way get beeped from behind by other motorists. I weekend in a NJ shore town that has a lot of crosswalks without lights. The law mandates that cars stop for peds in the crosswalk. There are signs posted. The town newsletter carries reminders. Yet, 9 out of 10 motorists do not stop. But that does not raise the level of outrage as a cyclist going the wrong way or running a light. Why?

  • Joe R.

    I think it’s because cyclists are still seen as “other”. If a majority cycled at least occasionally, we would probably legalize many of the currently illegal but safe things cyclists do, such as passing red lights at empty intersections. At the very least, these actions would illicit the outrage they currently do.

  • Actually it is both Kevin and Adam together for the correct answer as even a NYPD officer riding a bike is not exempt from NYPD anti-cyclist bias.

  • Anonymous

    And yet it was a pedestrian, not a cyclist who was maimed. So you actually would need to dissuade people from walking, which is insane. We shouldn’t even be having this discussion; the god damn NYPD/DA should be doing their job and start enforcing the laws motorists must abide by and punishing them accordingly when they break, especially when they risk vulnerable road users such as pedestrians and cyclists.

  • Anonymous

    65 in a 45 in the city isn’t just ‘oops I got busted’ speeding. It’s reckless driving.

  • Anonymous

    Who’s running against DA Hynes? It should be quite easy to start a campaign against “The DA who Encourages Cops To Murder People”.

  • Anonymous

    Yeah — the evidence is that it’s not so much *lack* of training — it’s outright lies about the law which are passed down from above, and ultimately, criminal instructions coming from Ray Kelly’s office. A fish rots from the head, as they say.

  • Anonymous

    Might only be manslaughter (intentional manslaughter), if the cabbie only intended to maim the cyclist.

  • Anonymous

    I can’t see any reason why police in Manhattan should ever be in cars. Ever. If they have to get to an incident quickly, it’s faster for them to take the subway!

  • Anonymous

    I can’t give Bloomberg any credit at all. All the good stuff seems to come from Janette Sadik-Kahn, who does her best within her department and has no influence over any other department.

    *Every* other department — not just NYPD, but *everything*, including such agencies as the Department of Buildings — is just as bad as it was before Bloomberg *or worse*. So I can’t give Bloomberg any credit at all.

  • Anonymous

    If you can get the attention of a grand jury, any grand jury is authorized to investigate and prosecute both the police and the DA’s office.

    That may be hard, though. Second best: vote out the accessory-to-crime DAs and vote in DAs who will crack down on criminals in blue uniforms.

  • Rossi

    I am for cycling for all the obvious reasons but in my NYC neighborhood, there are countless, no exaggeration, cyclers who ride the wrong way down one way streets. There seems to be no accountability for that but should I hit one of those riders, what then? Should I seriously injure or kill one of them, what then? There definitely should be some kind of licensing and even insurance. In the city, I have almost been hit, as a pedestrian, so many times by these cyclers going at high speeds. I don’t think they belong in Manhattan.

  • Anonymous

    How about we get licenses and insurance for pedestrians. I’m sick of them Jaywalking, crossing mid block or standing in the bike lane waiting to jay walk. I don’t think pedestrians belong in this city.

  • Alex Knight

    And how many pedestrians have been seriously injured or killed by a cyclist in the last 4 years? Zero. The numbers don’t exactly back up your absurd anecdotal complaints and ridiculous suggestion that cyclists be banned from Manhattan. How about we ban cars from Manhattan. They kill several hundred people a year.

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