[UPDATE]: State Senator Tells Staffer ‘Kill Yourself!’ After She ID’d Him Parked Illegally in a Bike Lane
A Brooklyn State Senator with a well-known temper and a history of road violence told a legislative staffer to “kill” herself after she revealed that he had illegally parked in a bike lane on Tuesday morning.
Kevin Parker tweeted “Kill yourself!” to GOP spokeswoman Candice Giove after she re-tweeted a picture of what she said was Parker’s car in a bike lane on Second Avenue between 43rd and 44th streets in Manhattan.
Parker later deleted the tweet and apologized to Giove for the suicide request, but he never apologized for the original transgression, cycling advocates pointed out.
“Now apologize for using your placard to park in a bike lane,” tweeted Danny Imperiali.
Streetfilms auteur Clarence Eckerson Jr. added, “Apology 1/3 complete. Still waiting for 2/3rds balance where he tells #bikenyc he is sorry for endangering their lives and addresses what is going on with that parking permit.”
Others called for Parker’s resignation.
Still, Parker doubled-down on his attack on Giove even after his half-hearted apology, tweeting, “@Candicegiove is on the wrong side of history for every important issue facing New York State!” (He made similar comments to the Daily News’s Ken Lovett.)
It’s not the first time Parker’s driving has led to violence. In 2009, he punched a NY Post photographer who was covering an alleged fight Parker had had with a Capitol parking attendant.
In 2005, a judge ordered Parker to undergo an anger-management course after he was charged with punching a traffic agent, the Daily News reported. (Within hours of the “Kill yourself!” tweet, Parker’s Wikipedia page had already been amended to feature it.)
Unreported was the 2016 incident where Parker allegedly rear-ended the car of fellow Brooklynite Benilda Ottley, who suffered serious spinal injuries. Ottley sued Parker, and the two settled out of court earlier this year.
More recently, cars owned by Parker have been nabbed dozens of times for speed zone infractions and other offenses. One car, with the license plate GUU-184, had 18 speeding tickets and 13 bus lane violations (see below), a plurality in 2017. Another car that has been linked to Parker, has three speed-zone tickets and two bus lane violations, all this year.
#NY_GUU8184 has been queried 1 time.
Total parking and camera violation tickets: 40
18 | School Zone Speed Camera Violation
13 | Bus Lane Violation
5 | Failure To Stop At Red Light
2 | No Standing – Day/Time Limits
1 | Fire Hydrant
— How's My Driving NY (@HowsMyDrivingNY) December 18, 2018
Parker’s driving record is likely to be an issue in the public advocate race, where Council Member Jumaane Williams is seen as a front runner. Williams, like Parker, has a lengthy record of reckless driving — and Parker is one of his key campaign officials.
The predictable response of an insecure NYC male driver when their “right” to break the law is challenged. https://t.co/dLmEMq3PXl
— Philip Leff (@philipleff) December 18, 2018
Streetsblog reached out to Parker and Williams, but has not heard back. Later in the day, reporter Zack Finke tweeted a statement from Williams.
“I’m very concerned by the statement I saw from Senator Parker on social media earlier today,” Williams said. “After speaking with him this afternoon, we have both agreed that it’s best for him to step down as co-chair of my campaign.”
Story was updated to include the new quote from Williams.