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Queens Pedestrian is Killed by Driver, Then Victim-Blamed by NYPD

5:58 PM EST on November 24, 2020

The crash site between 81st and 82nd streets, looking eastbound. Photo: Google

A Queens senior was struck and killed today by a driver on a dangerous roadway alongside a popular park, but police gave no details except to claim the pedestrian jumped out "midblock" between two parked cars.

According to the NYPD, a 42-year-old driver of a 2004 Chrysler was traveling eastbound on Juniper Boulevard, between 81st and 82nd street at around 6:35 a.m. when he struck Eugenia Atamian, 75, whom police said "was attempting to cross Juniper Boulevard, midblock, and emerged between parked vehicles."

It is unclear who provided that information. The driver remained on the scene while Atamian, the other certain witness, was taken to North Shore Forest Hills Hospital, where she died. There were no charges against the driver.

A police spokesman said he did not have any information about the driver's speed or whether he was distracted by his phone or a passenger in the car.

"The investigation is ongoing," the NYPD spokesman said.

What is known is that Juniper Boulevard is exceptionally wide, allowing for higher speeds than other residential roadways in that part of Middle Village. Also, the stretch between 80th Street and Dry Harbor Road comprises three blocks with no crosswalks between the housing and the park.

At least 89 pedestrians have been killed by drivers this year in New York City, which is on pace for more road deaths this year than last.

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