NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Brooklyn community leaders called on the city to crack down on reckless drivers Monday after an infant was killed and her parents were badly hurt over the weekend.
Police said the family of three was hit in a crash caused by a wrong-way driver who had nearly 100 driving infractions, CBS2’s Natalie Duddridge reported.READ MORE: US Officials: Only A Matter Of Time Before Omicron COVID Variant Found In America
Devastated neighbors and witnesses started a memorial for the baby girl. They’re praying for her hospitalized parents.
“I can’t imagine waking up in the hospital and your first thought has to be, ‘Where’s my baby?'” one woman said.
A mother and father were out for a walk with their 3-month old baby girl in a stroller around 6 p.m. Saturday in Clinton Hill.
Police said a driver caused the chain reaction crash in which a car plowed into the family, injuring the parents and killing their infant daughter.
“I heard the father screaming and screaming. He picked up the baby, he was holding it in his arms,” said witness Renee Collymore.
The father, 36, was injured, but not as seriously as his wife, 33, who is fighting for her life in the hospital.
“I’m actually a nanny in the neighborhood and their parents know the mom and the baby. So they’re really scared about this,” said Kerry Duberry.
Witness Mangue Banzima helped paramedics communicate with the couple in French.
“She’s scared,” Banzima said. “Blood coming out of her head, you know, knees are all bruised up.”
Investigators believe the driver of a gray Honda was going the wrong way on Gates Avenue when it T-boned a car going north of Vanderbilt Avenue.READ MORE: 2 Islanders Games Postponed Amid COVID-19 Outbreak
Police said the driver, Tyrik Mott, 28, and his passenger tried to run from the scene. Mott was caught allegedly trying to hijack another car a few blocks away.
Mott has been arrested at least three times before and his license was previously suspended, investigators said. Local officials said he had more than 90 speeding violations in school zones.
“Driver’s licenses should have follow-up about if you’re using it correctly or not,” said one resident.
Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, who is running for mayor, joined transportation advocates to call for safer streets.
“The family will never be the same,” Adams said.
“We’re heartbroken and we’re angry. This is another preventable crash that’s taken place on Mayor de Blasio’s streets,” said Danny Harris, executive director of Transportation Alternatives. “We need to be reducing the speed limit. We need to be taking our most dangerous and reckless drivers off the road.”
Mayor Bill de Blasio addressed the incident during his daily briefing Monday, saying the laws are lax. But he passed the buck, saying the state needs to take a harder stance.
“The Crash Victim Rights and Safety Act, it’s passed one house of legislature. We need to get it passed by both. We need the governor to sign it,” de Blasio said. “We also are beginning now the process that could lead to reckless drivers’ vehicles being seized before they can do more harm.”
“We also need to be authorized to do as much as possible with speed cameras, particularly around schools, where young people are,” the mayor continued.
Mott was arraigned Sunday night for the carjacking, but not yet for the crash.MORE NEWS: CBS2 Weather Headlines: Passing Rain, Snowflakes Possible Sunday Afternoon; Same Story Overnight
The 49-year-old driver of the other car was also hospitalized.