Family of Hit-and-Run Victim Lorenzo Anderson to Queens DA Richard Brown: “We Want Justice”

Add another case to Brown's record of declining to pursue charges against drivers who kill people and flee the scene.

Video still: WABC
Video still: WABC

Family members of Lorenzo Anderson are calling for justice after Queens District Attorney Richard Brown declined to file charges against the hit-and-run driver who killed him.

Anderson was biking home from work on the night of August 17, 2017, when a motorist hit him with a Mercedes at 36th Avenue and 12th Street in Astoria. The driver exited the car and ran away from the scene.

Lorenzo Anderson
Lorenzo Anderson

Anderson was in a coma for seven months before he died on March 19. He was 59.

The Daily News reported that the driver was “filming a music video” when the collision occurred. A passenger in the car was interviewed by police and an arrest was made, according to WABC, but Brown didn’t pursue the case due to “lack of evidence.”

Anderson’s family is not satisfied with Brown’s decision. “We want this to be taken care of,” the victim’s brother Edgar Anderson told WABC. “We want justice. We want justice.”

To win a hit-and-run conviction in New York, prosecutors must prove a driver knew or had reason to know a collision occurred. Since the driver who hit Anderson fled on foot, it’s difficult to imagine how knowledge of the collision might be contested.

Rather, it seems prosecutors are saying they lack evidence to prove who was behind the wheel — though the car was abandoned at the scene, there was at least one passenger and, according to the Daily News, possible video evidence.

Richard Brown has a long history of failing to hold hit-and-run killers accountable, agreeing to lenient plea deals or dropping cases without bringing charges. In this instance, Brown appears to be rewarding the driver who killed Lorenzo Anderson for fleeing.

“[N]o one deserves to go out like this,” the victim’s brother Ricky Anderson told the Daily News. “The person who did this is still out there and could possibly do this again.”