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Truck Driver Gets Minor Charges For Killing a Woman in Sunset Park

12:05 PM EDT on May 3, 2019

File photo: Gersh Kuntzman

A truck driver is facing virtually no jail time for running over a Sunset Park woman crossing Seventh Avenue with the light on April 27.

Cops said they had arrested Xiang Chen, 67, and charged him with failure to yield to a pedestrian and failure to exercise due care — neither of which carries any significant jail time — for killing Youfeng Xu, 72.

According to police, Xu was crossing Seventh Avenue from west to east when Chen, driving a box truck, turned into her from 55th Street. Xu was taken to a nearby hospital, where she died three days after the crash.

These are just the crashes that caused injuries in Sunset Park's council district since January, 2017.
These are just the crashes that caused injuries in Sunset Park's council district since January, 2017.

Chen remained on the scene and was taken into custody. It is unclear why NYPD waited until May 3 to announce the arrest. "The investigation remains ongoing," police said in a statement.

Sunset Park is one of the most dangerous places for pedestrians. Since 2017, 504 pedestrians have been injured, and three killed, in the city council district that contains the neighborhood.

In addition, 243 cyclists and 1,744 motorists have been injured, with one cyclist and three drivers killed. In just those 28 months, there have been 10,170 crashes — roughly 12 per day in a small part of the city. Of those crashes, 1,868 caused injuries.

Citywide, road fatalities are soaring, with an increase of 30 percent versus the same period last year, according to NYPD statistics. Patrol Borough Brooklyn South has the most fatalities of any command, with 14 out of the 65 reported deaths so far this year. The 72nd Precinct, which covers Sunset Park, is part of Brooklyn South.

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