Red Light Runner Who Killed Cyclist in Midwood Charged With Drugged Driving

Avenue P and E 12th Street, facing west.
Avenue P and E 12th Street, facing west. Image via Google Street View

The driver who ran a red light and killed a cyclist in Midwood last night has been charged for driving while impaired by drugs. It’s not clear yet whether NYPD and DA Ken Thompson will file additional charges.

At around 10 p.m., Eduard Nikhman, 26, drove his Honda Accord through a steady red light heading westbound on Avenue P, T-boning a southbound vehicle on E 12th Street and propelling it into the path of a man cycling northbound in the western crosswalk, inflicting fatal injuries. The victim’s name has yet to be released pending notification of his family. Gothamist has posted security camera footage of the collision.

NYPD charged Nikhman with driving while impaired by drugs, according to the department’s public information office (DCPI). NYPD did not reveal the substance in Nikhman’s system. When I asked whether the investigation might yield additional charges against Nikhman, DCPI referred me to Thompson’s office. The DA’s press office said Nikhman was arrested last night and has yet to be arraigned.

Avenue P is a wide, two-way street where drivers are “constantly speeding,” a local resident told CBS2.

The victim is the fourth cyclist known to have been killed by a motorist reportedly violating traffic laws in New York City in recent weeks.

On Classon Avenue in Clinton Hill, Lauren Davis was run over by a driver who was reportedly turning onto Lexington Avenue and failed to yield. On Sixth Avenue in Park Slope, James Gregg was killed by a semi-truck driver operating an oversized vehicle on a street where trucks are not allowed. And outside the Mosholu Gate of the New York Botanical Garden, a truck driver exiting the garden failed to yield to Heather Lough as she crossed Southern Boulevard, taking her life.

None of these crashes — or any crashes in the past 70 days — have been mapped yet by the de Blasio administration’s Vision Zero View website, which is supposed to provide regular updates on street safety by tracking traffic deaths and injuries. The site hasn’t been updated since February collision data was added. A notice says crash updates will resume after the city finishes “transitioning to a new electronic crash data reporting system.”

  • Critical critic

    Indeed Avenue P is a speedway. Brooklyn knows nothing of Vision Zero.

  • petercow
  • Mike

    It’s not just Ave P. Pretty much all of the lettered avenues (along with King’s Highway and other mostly parallel roads) are speedways. Trying to bike east or west in that area is a nightmare during busy times of day.

  • BBnet3000

    It’s not much better N/S. Ocean Parkway is rife with blockage and turning conflicts (and ped ramps instead of a real bikeway treatment, etc) and Bedford is a speedway with doorzone bike lanes. I stopped riding the Jamaica Bay Greenway because it’s too much of a pain for me to get there. I doubt we are going to see it connected to the rest of the Brooklyn Waterfront Greenway any time soon. Instead they’re doing protected bikeways along low traffic residential streets in Canarsie that don’t need them.

  • Vooch

    thinking this warrants more than a negligent homicide charge. Also revoked license for 40 years

  • Mike

    North/South, I usually take one of the non-bike lane streets. E 12th and E 13th are pretty chill.

  • Not that the mayor has to speak up every time there’s a fatality, but one might think that four dead New Yorkers in less than a month would warrant at least a statement from City Hall. Last week’s Vision Zero helmet press conference , coupled with the mayor’s silence, seems all the more tone-deaf as the death toll mounts.

  • Brooklyn Traffic Observer

    Nikhman’s big mistake here was being on drugs. If he’d done exactly the same thing while sober, he’d very likely still be free to drive around NYC like a complete asshole.

    “Reckless Driving: If You Do It While You’re Sober, It’s Just An ‘Accident’ (anonymous police sources say).”

  • SSkate

    Having used E 13th recently because the asphalt on Ocean Ave south of Kings Highway is not skate-friendly, I’d be inclined to agree with BBnet3000. Except that of course the crash in question occurred on E 12th. The numbered streets might have better-behaved traffic, but you still have to worry about where they cross the lettered avenues.

  • BBnet3000

    I’ve done the same but end up getting stopped at every single light.

  • Sean Kelliher

    I don’t know about you, but Bill deBlasio emailed me yesterday and guess what? Vision Zero is a huge success. He’s also “committed to” installing lots of protected bike lanes and reminded me that, like everyone, I need to do my part. Here’s the email below.

    ———————–

    Thank you for writing to me about the safety of cyclists and pedestrians on New York City streets.

    With a combination of tougher enforcement of dangerous driving conditions, smarter street design, and educational campaigns to discourage dangerous behavior, our Vision Zero Action Plan made 2015 the safest year ever on New York City streets. Even after achieving this incredible safety milestone, our Vision Zero efforts will continue to build out the existing network of protected bike lanes even farther because we know that they are essential in calming traffic and reducing the chance of crashes.

    The NYC Department of Transportation is committed to installing over 15 miles of physically protected bicycle lanes in 2016 across all five boroughs. We will also be investing an additional $115 million in capital funds that will support efforts to crack down on dangerous drivers, expand NYPD enforcement to protect pedestrians, and expedite the progress that has already been made by moving Vision Zero ahead with even more intensity in the coming year.

    By working together, we can encourage one another to take greater responsibility and make smarter choices each time we get behind the wheel or step into the street. Thank you for being a concerned New Yorker.

    Sincerely,

    Bill de Blasio

    Mayor

  • Vooch

    gag me

  • MiklosMeszaros

    I think you’re linking the wrong person.

    https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100008230210825

    The car in question is listed in this particular profile.

  • Anadgz

    Not really, i live in the area and no matter what time of the day/night; a lot of drivers don’t even let us cross the street because they don’t obey the STOP sign or run a red light. I always bike and walk ave P to my job and home always letting drivers go first to b a little safer.