NEW YORK (CBS 2) — An 83-year-old woman was in critical condition Friday night after a driver slammed into her on Staten Island.
Margaret “Peggy” Walsh was taking a walk she had made hundreds of times through the years — heading to her weekly hair appointment.
But her peaceful Friday afternoon was interrupted when she was struck by 20-year-old Cesar Velasquez at Pelton Avenue in West Brighton. Velasquez was arrested at the scene for driving without a license.
“They didn’t see each other. The driver didn’t see my mom and my mom didn’t see the driver,” the victim’s daughter Ronnie Keane told CBS 2’s Sean Hennessey.
“The whole salon kind of ran to see what happened. Heard a boom and she was on the ground.” witness Patricia Curry said.
Friday night, Walsh’s family gathered at her home and held vigil at the hospital for the mother of seven and grandmother to 30.
“She’s got some broken bones in her cheek. They think she has a broken pelvis. Very swollen and she’s on a ventilator,” the victim’s son Thomas Walsh said.
More troublesome was the fact that Velasquez’s license had been suspended numerous times — a fact that did not sit well with Walsh’s family.
“I don’t know how he’s still driving.” Thomas Walsh said.
“He shouldn’t have been on the road. He shouldn’t have been on the road. Bottom line, and that’s a sin,” Keane said.
CBS 2’s tried to talk to family at Velasquez’s home, but no one inside would come to the door.
The victim’s son said that while they first believed Velasquez was speeding, police said they believed the man’s vision may have been blocked by an ambulance.
Witnesses said that ambulance was able help Walsh within seconds and take her to Richmond University Medical Center.
Velasquez was being held at 120th police precinct station house and booked on charges of driving with a suspended license.