NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A driver who was arrested in connection with a crash that killed a man sitting on a park bench on Staten Island is set to be released from police custody.
Oriamor Benson was originally arrested and charged with driving while ability impaired, but prosecutors decided to release her on Thursday, waiting for toxicology results before determining whether more serious charges should be filed.
Benson lost control of her SUV near Bay Street and Victory Boulevard just before 2 p.m. Wednesday, colliding with another car as it was turning left onto Bay Street, police said.
Benson then veered to the right, jumping the curb and slamming into 57-year-old David Craig as he sat on a bench in Thompkinsville Park, police said.
“As soon as she hit the car, she was airborne,” said witness William Gibson. “All he had a chance to do was look up and he was done.”
Cellphone video showed chaos just moments after, with a witness yelling, “There’s a man there!”
“We looked down and there was another pair of legs that we didn’t know where they came from,” said witness John Childs.
“When she landed on him, nobody knew he was under there,” said Gibson. “That’s how much of his body was under it.”
Craig’s belongings were scattered around the scene as emergency crews tried to save him. He was rushed to Richmond University Medical Center where he was pronounced dead, police said.
Craig’s father, Edward Craig, was shocked by the loss of his son.
“We’re a small family,” he said.
Craig was veteran of the Navy and lived with his parents.
Benson, who was also injured in the crash, was taken to the hospital where she was arrested.
The investigation is ongoing.