Monday’s Headlines: Another Weaponized Car Edition

The moment when the driver struck the protesters. Photo: Kevin Cox
The moment when the driver struck the protesters. Photo: Kevin Cox
It's our December donation drive. Your gift helps us do these kinds of important stories. So please click here.
It’s our December donation drive. Your gift helps us do these kinds of important stories. So please click here.

The big story of the weekend was the first story of the weekend: On Friday afternoon, a Queens woman drove into a crowd of Black Lives Matter protesters in Midtown, injuring six people (NY Post, NY Times, WSJ, Gothamist).

The driver, Kathleen Casillo, 52, was charged with reckless endangerment, but received only a desk appearance ticket — meaning that in this city, you can try to kill a dozen people yet still be released on your own recognizance … if you do it with a car (NY Post). Casillo claimed she “panicked” when protesters slapped her car windows — a pretty common occurrence when drivers of 3,000-pound vehicles intimidate unprotected pedestrians (NYDN).

The video of the incident is horrifying:

Meanwhile, Friend of Streetsblog Rob Foran wondered why cops can’t keep drivers away from peaceful protesters:

But two Republicans in Missouri want to make it legal to do exactly what Casillo allegedly did, Newsweek reported.

And in other news from the weekend:

  • It’s two much to believe: Both former Department of Transportation Commissioner Polly Trottenberg and Interim NYC Transit President Sarah Feinberg are in the running to be Transportation Secretary in the Biden Administration. (NYDN)
  • Guse of the Newsuh took a bus ride with Sen. Charles Schumer on the Upper East Side — and learned that the senior senator believes he can get $4 billion for the MTA.
  • The dredging of the toxic Gowanus Canal has gotten interesting — now they’re pulling out abandoned cars (check the trunks!). (Pardon Me for Asking)
  • A hit-and-run driver killed Ecuadoran immigrant Manuel Jose Enealada-Villa in Manhattan on Saturday (NYDN). Meanwhile, another hit-and-run driver killed two women who worked with developmentally disabled children as they carpooled to a group home (NYDN). Oddly, the Post called the crash — which featured a driver speeding through a red light — an “accident.”
  • More than 30 members of the House of Representatives have introduced a bill to fund highways and transit equally, rather than the current 80/20 split. (Data for Progress)
  • Paging the chutzpah department: Uber and Lyft may not consider drivers employees, but they want drivers at the front of the line for the COVID-19 vaccine. (Tech Crunch)
  • One ride-hailing driver says that, after taxes and expenses, he actually lost $250 last year. (Jalopnik)


Eyes on the Street: First Weekend of Car-Free Summer Streets

A reader sends in these shots of weekend car-free street activity. Above, the crowd takes in a performance from the Fourth Arts Block "Meet the Street" series on East 4th Street between the Bowery and Second Avenue in Manhattan; below is a scene from the first Saturday of Williamsburg Walks, taken at North 6th and […]

Eyes on the Street: The Weekend Scene at Corona Plaza

It hasn’t been open a week yet, and Corona Plaza is already a popular gathering spot. In the next few days, Streetfilms will be posting a video about the new plaza featuring Council Member Julissa Ferreras. In the meantime, enjoy some more photos of the plaza getting lots of use over the weekend courtesy of Clarence. […]

Happy Memorial Day Weekend (With Gusto This Time)

The full transformation will take a few months to set up, but come Memorial Day, pedestrians will finally have some breathing room at Times Square. When Memorial Day weekend rolls around, here at Streetsblog we usually take the opportunity to note the advent of the summer driving season — and all the waste and violence […]