NYPD: Critically-Injured Cyclist Caused High-Speed Park Slope Collision

NYPD blamed this collision on the cyclist, despite a witness account that the driver was speeding. Photo: Toby Cecchini
NYPD blamed this collision on the cyclist, despite a witness account that the driver was speeding. Photo: Toby Cecchini

A 20-year-old man is in critical condition after he was hit by a driver while riding a bike in Park Slope last night. Though a witness said the driver was speeding, police blamed the victim for the crash.

NYPD said the 25-year-old motorist was traveling southbound on Sixth Avenue near Ninth Street in a Honda sedan when the northbound cyclist “suddenly reared into the southbound lane, causing a collision.”

Police accounts cited by Gothamist said the cyclist was riding against traffic in the southbound lane. NYPD told Gothamist the motorist had been waiting at the red light at Sixth and Ninth just before the collision occurred.

The victim went head-first through the windshield into the vehicle’s passenger compartment, according to NYPD. Photos of the scene show the windshield was destroyed, a sign of high-speed collision.

Toby Cecchini, who witnessed the crash and tended to the victim before police arrived, told Gothamist the driver came “flying past” before he heard what sounded like an “explosion.”

Cecchini said the victim “was canted into the front passenger seat, his legs sticking out through the windshield.” According to Cecchini, the driver was “shouting loudly that the cyclist swerved into him from nowhere and repeating it loudly over and over to different group[s] of people.”

After Cecchini told a detective what he saw, he said the detective “didn’t tell me anything that I recall about them needing me as a witness or any such, or how I might reach them.”

“As of noon today, I haven’t been contacted by anyone connected to the police,” Cecchini said.

The victim, whose name was not made public, was transported to nearby New York Methodist Hospital after police arrived at 9:20 p.m. The NYPD Collision Investigation Squad is working the crash and no charges have been filed, police said.

One cyclist and seven motor vehicle occupants were injured at Sixth Avenue and Ninth Street in 2015, according to city crash data. Earlier this year, 33-year-old cyclist James Gregg was killed by the driver of an off-route eighteen-wheel truck at Sixth Avenue and Sterling Place.

Last night’s crash occurred in the 78th Precinct and in the City Council district represented by Brad Lander. To share your concerns about reckless driving with CO Captain Frank DiGiacomo, go to the next the 78th Precinct community council meeting, scheduled for Tuesday, September 27, at the precinct house, located at 65 Sixth Avenue.

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