NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The longtime partner of an MTA bus driver is suing the man who is accused of killing the driver by ramming a stolen delivery truck into his bus.

In a lawsuit filed Thursday, the one-year anniversary of the crash, Nancy Rodriguez is also suing 1 Oak, the nightclub that served Dominick Whilby, and the trucking company whose employee left the keys in the vehicle before it was swiped, WCBS 880’s Peter Haskell reported.

On Feb. 12, 2014, Whilby allegedly smashed the truck into the city bus at 14th Street and Seventh Avenue in Manhattan, killing William Pena, 49. Prosecutors said Whilby’s blood-alcohol level was twice the legal limit.

Whilby, 23, has been charged with second-degree murder and is jailed while awaiting trial.

He had allegedly spent part of the night partying in the Meatpacking District with his famous uncle, model Tyson Beckford, at 1 Oak. Sanford Rubenstien, the attorney representing Rodriguez, said alcohol fueled Whilby’s alleged crime spree and accuses 1 Oak of failing to cut off the supply of booze in time.

New York state’s Dram Shop Law says a drinking establishment can be held liable in civil court if it serves alcohol to an obviously drunken person.

Dominick Whilby (credit: CBS 2)

Dominick Whilby (credit: CBS 2)

“We filed a lawsuit today to hold everyone accountable who is responsible for this wrongful death,” Rubenstein said.

No dollar amount is specified in the lawsuit.

Rubenstein said he will likely call on Beckford to testify on what he noticed about his nephew’s behavior that fateful night.

Rodriguez, meanwhile, said she’s still struggling to cope a year after Pena’s death.

“It’s been very, very difficult on us,” she said.

William Pena was killed in a bus crash on Feb. 12, 2014. (credit: Transit Workers Union)

William Pena was killed in a bus crash on Feb. 12, 2014. (credit: Transit Workers Union)

“William was a very loving, funny, giving person,” she recalled.

A representative from the Butter Group, which operates 1 Oak, told CBS2’s Dave Carlin the club’s owners won’t comment on the lawsuit.

Owners of the White Plains-based trucking company named in the suit declined to comment to Haskell and did not return repeated phone calls from CBS2.


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