Skip to Content
Streetsblog New York City home
Log In

Senior and Child Killed by Driver in Jamaica — By a DRIVER, Mr. Mayor

6:47 AM EDT on October 31, 2020

File photo: Dave Colon|

Photo: Dave Colon

Two pedestrians — a senior citizen and a child — were run down and killed by the reckless driver of a Range Rover in Jamaica on Friday night, and the mayor tweeted insensitively about the death.

According to cops, Yuniang Cong, 65, and Jashanty Cole, 8, were walking on 164th Street and Jamaica Avenue at about 5:30 p.m. on Friday when the 47-year-old female operator of a black Range Rover, who was traveling southbound on 164th Street, "lost control" as she approached Jamaica Avenue, and "jumped the curb," striking the two pedestrians.

Both were taken to Jamaica Hospital, where they died. The driver remained at scene and was not immediately charged.

Hours later, Mayor de Blasio tweeted his "prayers" without mention the killer human.

It is not believed that the victims are related. They have different addresses in Queens.

On Saturday, Transportation Alternatives Executive Director Danny Harris issued the following statement:

Two more innocent New Yorkers are dead because of a transportation system which puts speed ahead of safety, and a culture which celebrates driving big, fast, and powerful vehicles. This is what happens when Vision Zero is reduced to a slogan. This is what happens when off-road vehicles invade our city streets.

Earlier this year, Mayor de Blasio slashed the budget for Vision Zero and put programs on hold which would systematically redesign our most dangerous streets and impound the vehicles of our most dangerous drivers. We’re seeing the results of these decisions in real time.

The mayor tweeted that his family sends prayers to the families of the victims. He must not stop there. To honor the victims of this preventable crash, the mayor must make Vision Zero whole, fully fund the Dangerous Vehicle Abatement Program, Green Wave Plan and Streets Master Plan, and empower his Department of Transportation to fix deadly streets without politics getting in the way.

Rita Barravecchio, a member of Families for Safe Streets whose 17-year-old niece Madeline Sershen was killed by a driver who ran a red light in Queens in 2018, asked the only question worth asking: "Are we not even safe on the sidewalk?"

"How many more have to die because of ‘out-of-control’ vehicles?" she added. "Witnesses said the driver appeared to be trying to beat the traffic light — something that happens all too often in this city.”

Stay in touch

Sign up for our free newsletter

More from Streetsblog New York City

Thursday’s Headlines: What an Historic Day Edition

It was such a big deal that all sorts of strangers in the press corps showed up. Plus other news.

December 7, 2023

Council Repeals Decade-Old Law that Stalled Bike Lane Installation

The City Council repealed a notorious. out-dated law that imposed lengthy delays on the city before it could break ground on new bike lanes.

December 7, 2023

Dynamic! MTA Could Hike Congestion Pricing Toll 25% on Gridlock Alert Days

The MTA said it had that power, and modeled it in its environmental assessment (see footnote 2 below), but no one ever reported it, until Wednesday.

December 6, 2023

Judge Orders Trial for Hit-and-Run Driver Who Turned Down ‘Reasonable’ Sentencing Offer

Judge Brendan Lantry turns down driver's request for mere probation for killing a delivery worker in 2022. The trial will start in January.

December 6, 2023

Wednesday’s Headlines: Another Big Day at City Hall Edition

Today is going to be another busy day for the livable streets crowd. So get ready with today's headlines.

December 6, 2023
See all posts