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Mom: The Driver Who Killed My Son on Flatbush Avenue Was Speeding

11:02 AM EDT on September 27, 2019

Luis Garcia

The mother of the man struck and killed early Tuesday on Flatbush Avenue says the driver who ended her son's life was speeding — and she's accusing cops of not conducting a thorough investigation.

Carmen Torres, the mother of Luis Garcia, told Streetsblog that her son would be alive if the driver — whose identity has not been provided by police — had been traveling at the 25 miles-per-hour speed limit when he struck Garcia as he walked near Fourth Avenue. The NYPD said its initial investigation revealed that the driver had the green light — but the agency also declined to answer any follow-up questions about the crash.

How Streetsblog covered the story.
How Streetsblog covered the story.

"My son was killed ... by what I believe was a speeding driver," Torres said. "Whether the light was green or not, whether my son was trying to beat the light or not, I believe he was speeding and because of it, [he] killed my son. My son had severe trauma and internal bleeding. What killed him was the head injury, which probably came from him hitting the windshield."

Indeed, photographs from the crash site published by the NY Post showed a huge indentation on the roof of the car and a windshield demolished on the passenger-side. The car did not appear to have a front license plate, suggesting that the driver is from out of state.

"I believe this man should not get away with what he did to my son," Torres added. "My son's wife, his child, his family are all suffering due to this [driver]. I am truly devastated that I lost my oldest son to this tragedy. I need answers."

Studies show that fatalities rise exponentially as car speeds increase. At 20 miles per hour, for example, roughly 5 percent of struck people die. At 30 miles per hour, that number jumps to roughly 20 percent. By 42 miles per hour — close to the speed that some drivers attain on Flatbush Avenue during the early morning hours when Garcia was hit — the number rises to 50 percent.

For now, Torres said simply, "I want to find out if there is any progress on the investigation."

On Friday, Streetsblog called the NYPD to ask — and was told that there is no update. The police department could still not answer basic questions about the crash, such as whether the driver was distracted by music or his phone, or whether he was speeding. Photos from the Post show the driver undertaking a field sobriety test, which he presumably passed, as no charges were immediately filed.

Torres claimed that the NYPD has provided no information to her.

"Does this driver have insurance, so they can give towards the wake and his funeral?" she asked. "This was not just a piece of meat laid out in the street. He was a father, a husband, a brother, and my son. A hard-working man providing for his family. And I am a grieving mother who want answers."

Services and a wake for Luis Garcia will be at Schaefer Funeral Home, 4123 Fourth Avenue, Brooklyn on Monday, Sept. 30, from 3 to 9 p.m.

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