DMV: Driver Who Killed Child in Crosswalk May Drive Again After Six Months
Pursuant to a New York State Department of Motor Vehicles hearing, the former cab driver who killed 9-year-old Cooper Stock will regain his driving privileges after six months.
In January 2014 Cooper and his father Richard Stock were crossing an Upper West Side street in a crosswalk with the right of way when Koffi Komlani hit them with a yellow taxi. Komlani was summonsed for careless driving and failure to yield. NYPD and Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance filed no criminal charges against him.
Komlani pled guilty last April and was sentenced to a $580 fine and a six-month suspension of his drivers license. After a June hearing, DMV administrative law judge Marc Berger suspended Komlani’s license for 180 days. An agency spokesperson told us the DMV penalty is concurrent with the terms of Komlani’s plea arrangement.
According to the Post, video of the crash was submitted as evidence at the DMV hearing.
When two DMV judges watched it, Komlani slumped his head, closed his eyes and put a hand to his face.
He claimed he did not see Cooper in the crosswalk.
“I never saw the son!” he told the judge during the hearing to decide whether he should keep his driver’s license. “I was not on the phone. I was not drunk. I was not on anything. I just missed them!”
A license suspension in New York State means a driver gets his license back once the term of the suspension is over. Had Komlani’s license been revoked he would have been required to file an application to regain his driving privileges, subject to DMV approval.
We asked for a copy of Berger’s findings. The DMV rep directed us to file a freedom of information request.
The Taxi and Limousine Commission did not renew Komlani’s probationary hack license, but under current agency rules he could reapply to drive a cab.
“I cannot understand how any judge, in any court, would not permanently revoke that person’s license when they watched a video of him running over a child right in front of him in plain sight,” Cooper’s mother, Dana Lerner, told us via email. “This man hit my husband and killed my 9-year-old child. Why should he be allowed the privilege of driving?”