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Truck Driver Backs Over, Kills Pedestrian on UES; NYPD: “No Criminality”

11:59 AM EST on December 7, 2010

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A dump truck driver hit and killed a 21-year-old man on the Upper East Side this morning at 6:06 a.m. The driver was traveling north on Madison Avenue when he realized he had passed his destination near 81st Street, according to the NYPD. He then put the truck in reverse, said police, and began to back up. The truck then hit the victim, who was crossing Madison, and killed him.

According to a report on DNAinfo, the pedestrian was in the crosswalk when the truck driver backed into him and dragged him for thirty feet before stopping. All this took place across the street from an elementary school.

DNAinfo reports that a summons may be issued, but the police apparently do not intend to file charges. The NYPD told Streetsblog that "no criminality is suspected at this time."

The recently enacted Elle's Law was passed in order to keep drivers who recklessly endanger and injure pedestrians from getting back behind the wheel. Three-year-old Elle Vandenberghe was left severely brain-damaged last year when an Upper East Side driver spotted a parking space and backed up through the crosswalk where the toddler was walking. In addition to using Elle's Law or filing a steeper charge like criminal negligence, another option for police and prosecutors would be to charge the driver with careless driving under Hayley and Diego's Law, which also passed this year in an attempt to hold drivers accountable for injuring pedestrians or cyclists. We have a call in with Manhattan DA Cy Vance's office to see if he'll use the legal tools at his disposal.

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