Pedestrian Struck by Hit-and-Run Driver Dies, Cops Say

The car driver who hit Christopher Marshall would have been using this left-turn lane to turn onto Eastern Parkway — but Marshall was in the crosswalk with the light, cops said.
The car driver who hit Christopher Marshall would have been using this left-turn lane to turn onto Eastern Parkway — but Marshall was in the crosswalk with the light, cops said.

A Brooklyn man has died from injuries he sustained earlier this month when he was struck by a hit-and-run driver on Eastern Parkway, cops said.

According to police, Christopher Marshall, 39, was crossing Eastern Parkway from south to north — inside the crosswalk and with the light — at around 6 a.m. on Nov. 9 when a driver turning left from Bushwick Avenue struck him, knocking Marshall to the pavement and causing severe head trauma.

Marshall was taken to Brooklyn Hospital, where he died on Friday. The drive of the car — preliminarily identified as a four-door Honda — kept going, police said.

The section of Bushwick Avenue — the very eastern end — where Marshall was killed is a notoriously dangerous stretch of unredesigned roadway featuring car dealerships and other facilities to service the automobile driver. As a result, it is an area with lots of crashes:

In just the 10-block stretch between the Jackie Robinson Parkway exit ramp and Chauncey Street, there were 252 total crashes reported in 2019 (the last full calendar year not affected by the pandemic), injuring three cyclists, two pedestrians and 70 motorists.

And more people are being injured on that stretch this year. Between January and October of 2019, 59 people — 55 of whom were drivers — were injured along that portion of Bushwick Avenue. But this year during the same period, 62 people have been injured: three cyclists, four pedestrians and 55 motorists. So nothing is getting safer on Bushwick Avenue.

Since Mayor de Blasio took office on Jan. 1, 2014, 645 people have been injured along just those 10 blocks: 22 cyclists, 30 pedestrians and 593 motorists.

Interestingly, since at least 2011, the roadway had a line of hard-plastic bollards to keep northbound traffic on Bushwick Avenue away from cars turning left onto Eastern Parkway. But after the road was repaved in 2020, the bollards were not restored, according to the Google Street View photo archive.

The city did not restore bollards after a repaving. It is unclear whether this played a role in the fatal November crash. Photos: Google
The city did not restore bollards after a repaving. It is unclear whether this played a role in the fatal November crash. Photos: Google

Will the driver who killed Christopher Marshall ever be found? It’s unlikely, given how few hit-and-run cases are solved. In 2020, police said they only caught 0.8 percent of the perpetrators of the 39,299 hit-and-run crashes that year. The vast majority of those crashes are limited to light or moderate property damage, but cops only solved 278 of the 6,032 hit-and-runs with injuries that year, or only 4.6 percent.

The news of Marshall’s death came hours before activists all over the world will gather at Sunday’s World Day of Remembrance for the victims of road violence. The Families for Safe Streets commemoration in New York will be at Brooklyn Borough Hall at 3 p.m. Click here for info.

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The Weekly Carnage

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The Weekly Carnage is a Friday round-up of motor vehicle violence across the five boroughs. For more on the origins and purpose of this column, please read About the Weekly Carnage. Fatal Crashes (5 Killed This Week; 156 This Year; 11 Drivers Charged*) Sunset Park: Kiko Shao, 5, Struck by SUV Driver; No Charges (Streetsblog) College Point: […]