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No Charges for Drivers Who Killed Seniors in Manhattan and Brooklyn

2:05 PM EDT on September 18, 2012

Two seniors have been killed by motorists in Manhattan and Brooklyn since Saturday. Both crashes were apparently precipitated by careless driving or negligence, according to reports, and both drivers were exonerated by NYPD.

Pagela Z and Gitzella Katz

Yesterday afternoon, 65-year-old Pelagia Zingatan was struck by a yellow cab driver at 69th Street and First Avenue. From the Post:

Zingtapan had been returning from lunch with a friend when the cabbie tore westbound across 69th Street, honking his horn, witnesses said.

They said the driver was trying to make the yellow light. Pedestrians including Zingtapan were already crossing 69th.

Zingtapan’s companion jumped out of the way, but she “froze” in the middle of the crosswalk, witnesses said.

After she was "dragged halfway down the block," according to the Post, passersby lifted the cab off Zingatan and administered aid. She died at Weill Cornell Medical Center.

Though witnesses quoted by the Post and the Daily News said the cab driver was gunning for the light, NYPD told DNAinfo that police "do not expect any foul play," and do not know if he was speeding. Cops told the Post and the News that they don't expect to file charges.

On Saturday night, Gitzella Katz, a 92-year-old Auschwitz survivor, was walking with her daughter Judy Fisher on Clymer Street in Williamsburg when they were hit by a 26-year-old man who was backing his SUV toward a parking spot. Fisher was hospitalized in stable condition. Katz died from a brain hemorrhage. The Post reports:

“They were just laying there, not moving. They were walking together. I saw them fall backward,” Pessie Gelb, 44, said.

Another witness, Christopher Wallace, heard the victims’ horrifying screams just before the accident.

The driver was not charged.

Gitzella Katz was the 34th pedestrian or cyclist known killed in Brooklyn this year. Of those 34 crashes, one sober driver is known to have been charged by Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes for causing a death.

Pelagia Zingatan was the 26th pedestrian or cyclist known killed in Manhattan in 2012. To date, no motorists are known to have been charged by Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance for killing a pedestrian or cyclist this year.

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