FREEPORT, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — A life was cut short in a strip mall parking lot, but was it simply a tragic accident or a crime?
A Freeport man was run over by a car twice, and on Tuesday his grieving family demanded a thorough investigation and answers, CBS2’s Carolyn Gusoff reported exclusively.READ MORE: Gen. Colin Powell, Former Secretary Of State, Dies At 84 Due To Complications From COVID-19
“I think people have to know the injustice of what happened,” Larry Schier said.
Schier knows a surveillance video is too disturbing to show in its entirety, but believes it shows a crime.
His 71-year-old brother, Stephen Schier, is seen leaving a Freeport drug store. A car abruptly backs out of a parking space, pauses, and then drives forward, running him over again before the driver pulls away.
“How could someone back up speeding over a body, hit a car, move it into another lane, itself, was negligent, and then go forward over the body again,” Larry Schier said.
Stephen Schier, his ribs and limbs all broken, succumbed to his injuries.
Now, four and a half months later, the driver has not been charged or even issued a violation. The Schiers’ attorney, Peter Bongiorno, wants the case presented to a grand jury.
“It’s clearly a negligent act, but beyond negligence, there are terms in our law called ‘reckless behavior,’ ‘conscious disregard.’ When you look at it it cries out that this is not a simple car accident,” Bongiorno said.READ MORE: Gen. Colin Powell Remembered Fondly At His Alma Mater, CCNY, And In The Bronx, Where He Was Raised
The driver, a 55-year-old Freeport woman, could not be reached for comment.
Bonnie Weinstein witnessed the horror.
“She kept saying, ‘It was her car. It was her car. It wasn’t me. It was my car.’ But to run over somebody two times?” Weinstein said. “This was a crime. If, God forbid, you back up and you hit somebody, you stop. You stop. You hit somebody. But you don’t hit him again and keep going.”
On the police report the driver stated, “She was unable to stop and lost control when it accelerated into pedestrian.”
The family is questioning police protocols. Was the car immediately impounded for a safety check?
Brendan Brosh, a spokesman for the DA, told CBS2, “We have had many contacts with the Schier family and have expressed the heartfelt sympathy of this office for the tragic death of Stephen Schier. We cannot comment further because the crash is under active investigation except to say that we regret the time it is taking to acquire all materials and close out leads.”
“This woman is scot-free and she could kill somebody else,” Larry Schier said. “For someone to drive that horrendously, pull out with no regard for human life whatsoever, it’s beyond comprehension to me.”
His family calls Stephen a beloved pillar of the community, an intellectual who spoke five languages. They added he was buying shaving cream at his neighborhood strip mall when his life ended.MORE NEWS: Report: Feds May Allow Americans To Get Different COVID Booster Than Vaccine They First Received
The mayor of Freeport called the incident a terribly tragic event, and said the village police department no longer has jurisdiction over the investigation. The Nassau County Police Department said it is actively investigating.