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NYC Motorists Injured 1,225 Pedestrians and Cyclists in July, and Killed 12

1:40 PM EDT on August 22, 2016

Andrew Esquivel, Jack Koval, Sean Ryan, and Matthew von Ohlen
Andrew Esquivel, Jack Koval, Sean Ryan, and Matthew von Ohlen
Andrew Esquivel, Jack Koval, Sean Ryan, and Matthew von Ohlen

Seventeen people died in New York City traffic in July, and 5,310 were injured, according to City Hall’s Vision Zero View crash data map.

City Hall reported 83 pedestrians and cyclists killed by city motorists through July of this year, and 8,378 injured, compared to 77 deaths and 7,835 injuries in the same period in 2015.

Citywide, nine pedestrians and three cyclists were fatally struck by drivers last month. Among the victims were Teresa Martinelli, Matthew von Ohlen, Jorge Zepeda, Andrew Esquivel, Sean Ryan, Terrence Montrose, Roberts Nukheimra, Jack Koval, Antonio Flores, and an unnamed male pedestrian in the Bronx.

Motorists killed at least one senior in July: Teresa Martinelli, 79.

Across the city, 727 pedestrians and 498 cyclists were reported hurt in collisions with motor vehicles. Per NYPD policy, few of these crashes were investigated by trained officers.

Of 10 fatal crashes on surface streets reported by Streetsblog and other outlets, three motorists were known to have been charged for causing a death. Based on NYPD and media accounts, at least four victims were likely walking or cycling with the right of way when they were struck.

Teresa Martinelli was reportedly “knocked out of her shoes” in a Midtown crosswalk by a driver who was charged with a misdemeanor Right of Way Law violation.

After Andrew Esquivel was struck and killed on a Brooklyn sidewalk by an allegedly drunk off-duty police officer, Police Commissioner Bill Bratton said drunk driving cops are “not a problem” at NYPD. Another driver who reportedly had a BAC of .163 killed Sean Ryan, 17, as he rode his bike near Marine Park. The motorists who killed Esquivel and Ryan were both charged with manslaughter.

Police said the hit-and-run driver who ran over cyclist Matthew von Ohlen in Brooklyn may have done so intentionally. Though investigators located the vehicle, von Ohlen’s killer remains at large. The 90th Precinct responded to von Ohlen's death by ticketing people on bikes.

NYPD said 22-year-old Jack Koval jumped a divider on 12th Avenue and ran into traffic before a motorist struck and killed him, then corrected its initial account of the crash. No charges were filed. When Jorge Zepeda was killed in the Bronx by a driver who left the scene, police pointed fingers at the victim, telling the press Zepeda was “drunk” and “lying in the street.”

Ignoring extensive vehicle damage that suggested the driver was exceeding the 25 mph speed limit, NYPD and the media blamed an unidentified man for allegedly stealing beer before he was struck and killed on Bruckner Boulevard, a street designed to facilitate speeding.

While walking on a Van Wyck Expressway service road in Queens, Roberts Nukheimra was fatally struck by a hit-and-run driver who was not immediately caught or identified. Police and prosecutors filed no charges against the motorist who killed Terrence Montrose in Queens by striking the victim head-on.

Historically, nearly half of motorists who kill a New York City pedestrian or cyclist do not receive so much as a citation for careless driving.

Five motor vehicle occupants died in the city in July, according to City Hall, and 4,085 were injured.

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