NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A woman and two children were run down by a car Friday afternoon in East Williamsburg, suffering broken bones, scratches and bruises.
Following the wild and horrible crash, a crowd of strangers came to the rescue.
Bystanders heroically lifted the car with their hands, freeing the two young children and a grandmother.
“We all just picked it up, we just put our hands underneath it and lifted it,” Edwin Padua told CBS 2’s Derricke Dennis. “There was kids under there, you could hear them screaming. You could hear the child screaming, [we] had to get them out.”
The victims are 52-year-old Elizabeth Castillo, her 3-year-old grandson Tyrese and a 17-month-old baby girl who was in a crushed stroller.
Castillo’s daughter thanked the heroes, who helped her mother away from the scene of the crash.
“If it wasn’t for them, it would’ve been worse. It would have been way worse,” Camille Castillo said. “My mom dove under to get the get the kids out, and he backed up again, and my [mom] got crushed underneath the car. Twice he rolled over her.”
The 17-month-old baby girl’s father was in tears on Friday night.
“I’ve been crying ’cause that’s my baby, that’s my baby girl, my youngest one,” Michael Green said.
Police are still investigating, but witnesses said the driver was parked and seemed to hit the gas while in reverse, hitting another parked car and then barreling onto the sidewalk and into a lot, pinning the victims underneath.
Police said the driver, who was in his 70s, was not hurt and won’t be criminally charged. Mechanical failure or a medical condition are considered to be possible causes.
That driver was surrounded and held by witnesses until police arrived.
The victims are all at Bellevue Hospital, listed as stable but critical because of their numerous injuries.
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