Mike Rogalle Killed by Curb-Jumping Driver in Manhattan, No Charges Filed

Mike Rogalle, the UPS worker struck while on the job in Lower Manhattan last week, has died.

No crime or traffic violation occurred at this fatal crash scene, according to NYPD and Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance. Photo: WNBC

Rogalle was on the sidewalk near 15 Beekman Street at 4:39 p.m. on Tuesday, April 17, when the driver of a GMC SUV jumped the curb, striking him from behind. Witnesses described a horrific scene, with Rogalle trapped under the vehicle, his internal organs exposed, until he was freed by emergency responders. He was reportedly awake and talking when he was taken to Bellevue Hospital in critical condition. Rogalle died on Sunday. He was 58.

A resident of Teaneck, New Jersey, Rogalle reportedly worked for UPS for 39 years, 26 of them on the same route in the Financial District, where he was well-known and well-liked.

There were two adults and two small children in the SUV at the time of the crash, according to reports. The adult passenger, a man, was identified only as an FDNY inspector. The driver, an unidentified woman, was reportedly removed from the car by FDNY and placed on a backboard with a neck brace. All four people in the car were taken to New York Downtown Hospital, reports said.

Though all details point to a high-speed crash — it would be all but impossible to “lose control” of a vehicle, jump a curb, kill a pedestrian, injure yourself and your passengers while adhering to the city’s 30 mph speed limit — Downtown Express reports that NYPD found “no criminality.”

“How could you go fast here on these streets?” said a local to the Daily News. “There’s stop signs, there’s construction and congestion. Look at the height of that curb! How fast could she have been going?”

This fatal crash occurred in the 1st Precinct. To voice your concerns about neighborhood traffic safety directly to Deputy Inspector Edward J. Winski, the commanding officer, head to the next precinct community council meeting. The 1st Precinct council meetings happen at 6:30 p.m. on the last Thursday of each month at the precinct, 16 Ericsson Place. The officer we spoke with could not immediately confirm if tonight’s meeting would take place as scheduled. Call the precinct at 212-334-0640 for information.

  • fj

    Important reporting of tragic completely preventable deaths.

    (Paul) “Farmer points to what he calls ‘structural violence,’ which influences ‘the nature and distribution of extreme suffering.’  The book is as he explains, ‘a physician-anthropologist’s effort to reveal the ways in which the most basic right — the right to survive — is trampled on in an age of great affluence.’  He argues: “Human rights violations are not accidents; they are not random in distribution and effect.  Rights violations are, rather, symptoms of deeper pathologies of power and are linked intimately to the social conditions that so often determine who will suffer abuse and who will be shielded from harm.’ ”

    This is from the foreword by Amartya Sen, Nobel Laureate, Economics to “Pathologies of Power; Health, Human Rights, and the New War on the Poor,” Paul Farmer, Professor of Medical Anthropology At Harvard Medical School and Founding Director of Partners in Health

  • The driver should be in jail for murder because that’s what he is — a murderer. 

  • ERA

    You mean she, Patrick.  The driver was the woman.

  • R. Kelly

    Is that the same DI Winski who regularly flouts (& fabricates) laws and human decency by beating and kidnapping people expressing free speech on Wall Street? Good luck getting him to look into this…

  • Anonymous

    There should really be a thorough investigation here.  Original reports said that the FDNY inspector emerged from the front seat of the car with a baby in his arms.  Riding with a baby in your arms in the front seat is illegal for good reason.  Sounds like even the lamest prosecutor has got his “rule of two” wrapped up here, but no criminality?  I find it fishy that this “unidentified woman” driver got taken away by EMS.  Pretty suspicious, especially if they were FDNY EMS.  I didn’t get to read streetsblog at all today or I might have gone to that precinct meeting.  Did anyone go?

  • Totally Baffled by Ray Kelly

    OK, so the NYPD and District Attorney are allowing this guy to continue to drive his rolling, 4,000-pound manslaughter machine on New York City streets? Are you f’ing kidding me?

  • Anonymous

    “I didn’t see him”

  • Anonymous

    @ddartley:disqus I went to the 1st PCT community council meeting last night. I identified myself as a neighborhood resident who passes by 15 Beekman Street on my evening bike commute — as I did on April 17, a few hours after Rogalle was fatally struck, with the street blocked by NYPD, EMS, etc.

    CO Winski listened respectfully to my narrative about the crash and Rogalle’s death, and called out an officer who had been first on the scene. The officer said the SUV had been on the *right-hand* side of Beekman and had swerved to avoid a parked car (he may have mentioned an opening door, I’m not sure), had lost control, and ended up on the left sidewalk. CO Winski dutifully referred to the investigation-in-progress by the Accident Investigation Squad.

    I might have asked, “By whose account?” Instead, I brought up possible speeding, possible texting, etc., and insisted that the AIS report be made public. I appealed to the audience of a few dozen fellow residents, none of whom I knew, who had spent the prior half-hour pressing their concerns about OWS noise, open-air drug sales and knock-off goods bazaars around Canal Street, etc. They seemed to listen sympathetically as I described the AIS process as a black hole and appealed to the CO as the official most responsible for public safety. He promised to “do what I can” to obtain the AIS report.

    I might have pressed further — “Wait, you’re telling us that you might not be able to see the report?” — but I thought it better to not come off as a professional crank.

  • Anonymous

    @Komanoff:disqus Thank you for going and it sounds like you did great; I’ve been to one precinct meeting so far and I know what you mean about being sensitive to the possibility of coming off like a crank, looking like you think you know cops’ jobs better than they do, etc.  I was so polite to a fault that I hardly made an impression that one time I went.  But as all the readers here know, “we” have a lot that we should be saying at these meetings, and I hope other streetsblog readers start to go.  TA’s East Side Volunteer Committee (who meets the first Tuesday of every month–see the streetsblog calendar) has a 2012 goal of getting more livable streets activists to these important meetings.  I really encourage other streetsblog readers to start going.  And be polite, but we need to start going more often.

  • Anonymous

    @ddartley:disqus Thanks for understanding! Your comment really captures that tricky dynamic. I agree that we need to be/become a strong presence at those meetings. I’ll try to do my  part.

  • Guest

    At some point, a blog post is no longer a sufficient outlet for outrage. “Wicked pixels” are just that.

  • anon

    this is a coverup. i was there. people witnessed the woman with the baby in her arms. and there were two undercover SUVS directly in front of the vehicle.

  • anon

    there was a white shirt commander there in ten minutes. this doesnt happen for a car accident. in twenty minutes, there were three commanders there. this is a ridiculous cover up. the undercover cars behind the SUV hit their siren, the woman had the baby in her arm and got startled and lost control of the vehicle, and Mike, a good guy, got killed. The SUVs were heading to the City hall parking lot, a block away.   

  • anon

    there was a white shirt commander there in ten minutes. this doesnt happen for a car accident. in twenty minutes, there were three commanders there. this is a ridiculous cover up. the undercover cars behind the SUV hit their siren, the woman had the baby in her arm and got startled and lost control of the vehicle, and Mike, a good guy, got killed. The SUVs were heading to the City hall parking lot, a block away.   

  • Anonymous

    @f7e03d5fd7b4d74a0561e51a8448651e:disqus I can’t figure out what you’re trying to say. Are you alleging that the driver was driving with a baby in her lap/arms? That doesn’t seem credible. What exactly did you witness? 

  • I’m confused by the height of the curb being used by the local to defend the impossibility of driving fast. Wouldn’t a high curb mean that driving fast would be a *requirement* in order to have jumped it?

  • Anonymous

    @maco:disqus  Who knows the mysterious heart of a Streetsblog reporter, but I suspect the curb comment is included to (a) provide “balance” and (b) mock said balance by raising exactly the question you have.

  • Kim Wiley-Schwartz

    I ride my bike past here frequently as well and knew when we came across the scene that someone has to have died. Way too many cops and caution tape.

  • Anon

    It is not a claim. Two people who work in the parking lot five feet from the accident said they both witnessed it. My large office window faces the street and is literally a few floors above the crash site. I was at my window within 2 seconds of the crash. There were two SUVs at the stop sign and I saw the driver of one run out and run to the crash. Both of these cars were stopped and within twenty feet of the accident. How was the driver speeding with two trucks in front of her on a street that is one of the smallest side streets in manhattan. This is all bullshit and I offered my story and the cops blew me off.

  • Guest

    This is insane. What is a newborn doing in the front seat of a car (and not in the back in a carseat) under ANY circumstance? It seems very possible and credible that the reason that this woman crashed was because she very well knew this herself! In a panic and having been distracted – this is how someone accelerates so suddenly & FATALLY.

  • Anon

    And the woman wasn’t removed by stretcher. She was standing there with her infant kid for like an hour.

  • Anon

    Komanoff i am not a nut. Mike has been delivering to my door for 15 years. We used to chat. I was down there in 5 minutes and I wouldn’t even try and describe what I and other people saw and we were all heartbroken when we saw it was Mike. We all had a memorial service for mike last week. I don’t know what this officer told you. There is no right and left side of the street. It’s a one way street. A very small street. Ask them about the two SUVS. One of them pulled over and was here for the duration. The other left. There is also some video from the building located at the accident. The police were given he video in front of me.

  • Nathanael

    Private prosecution?  Elect a new DA?  This does sound like a deliberate attempt to let a woman get away with manslaughter, presumably because she was well-connected.

  • Anonymous

    @f7e03d5fd7b4d74a0561e51a8448651e:disqus I see and respect that Mike’s death hits you personally. But I can’t see what good it does to post confusing accounts, which is how your earlier comments appeared to me. I believe that if I were in your shoes I would sit down, take a deep breath, and try to write down, second by second and step by step, exactly what I saw. I would share it with attorney Steve Vaccaro, who is representing the Lefevre family so well in seeking justice for Mathieu’s death last fall, in the hope that Steve might be able to make use of it or advise you on how to do the same. P.S. Of course Beekman Street is one way, I should know, I ride it practically every day en route home (as I said in my initial comment here); but it still has left and right sides.

  • ChrisCalmon

    Mike was my cousin. He just came in France for a few days and we couldn’t see each other and regret it. I regret it much more today… I have planned to go and see him next year… I can’t express my sadness. Mike was a man of good. Let’s remember him as he used to be : a good man, nice, hard and faithful worker. Let’s have a tought to for his son and his two daughters, God bless them. Mike will stay in the hearts of all those who knew him.

  • Johnusa2003

    reflects how carelees peeople drive at such craziness with no concern for otheers


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