Driver Kills Toddler in the Bronx as NYPD and the Press Declare “Accident”

E. 164th Street and Gerard Avenue, where a driver killed a 3-year-old this morning. Image: Google Maps
E. 164th Street and Gerard Avenue, where a driver killed a 3-year-old this morning. Image: Google Maps

Update: WPIX identified the victim as Mariam Dansoko. WPIX and other outlets are reporting that the driver, a 21-year-old man, was turning left from Gerard Avenue onto E. 164th Street when he hit her.

A driver killed a 3-year-old girl in the Bronx this morning. NYPD filed no charges and almost immediately told the press the crash was an “accident.”

An NYPD spokesperson told Streetsblog the victim “was walking behind her mom” at E. 164th Street and Gerard Avenue, not far from Yankee Stadium, when she was hit by the driver of a black Nissan.

The crash occurred at around 8 a.m. The police spokesperson had no details on who had the right of way. The driver was not charged criminally and was not issued a traffic ticket.

Media reports said the victim’s mother was pushing a stroller with a second child inside. They were not reported to be injured.

Details are still scarce, but the Post, the Daily News, and WABC all repeated information from the police concerning the actions of the child and her mother, while downplaying or ignoring the role of the driver who took the child’s life.

“The little girl tried to keep up, but was struck by a driver,” the Post said.

“The collision appeared to be an accident, police said,” read the News.

When a New York City motorist kills a child, the press tends to reflexively blame the victim or her caretakers while absolving the driver of responsibility. Media outlets including the Daily News reported that 3-year-old Allison Liao “broke free” from her grandmother when a driver struck and killed her in a crosswalk in Flushing in 2013, when in fact the two were holding hands and crossing the street with the right of way. “Investigators currently believe this may have all been an accident,” WABC reported after Allison was struck.

This fatal crash occurred in the 44th Precinct, where officers ticketed 356 drivers for speeding and 69 drivers for failing to yield this year as of April, and in the City Council district represented by Melissa Mark-Viverito.

We will post more information as it becomes available.

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