After initially stating that the police officer who struck and killed Felix Coss in a crosswalk on Saturday would not be facing any charges, the NYPD is now investigating whether that officer was on her cellphone at the time of the crash. According to DNAinfo's sources, witnesses told police that the driver of the marked police van, Paula Medrano, was on her cellphone when she failed to yield at the crosswalk and fatally struck Coss. The sources said Medrano refused to hand her cellphone over to investigators, and the department has subpoenaed her phone records.
An NYPD spokeswoman said that as of this morning, no charges have been filed against Medrano, and that the investigation is ongoing.
Both daily tabloids also carried the report that Medrano, 45, may have been on her cellphone. The Daily News quotes a witness: “She had a cellphone to her right ear. She hit him. When she hit him, he fell on the floor and cracked his head open.”
Medrano was not responding to an emergency and was wearing civilian clothes at the time she hit Coss, a schoolteacher who lives and works just blocks from where he was killed in Williamsburg.
Driving while talking on a cell phone carries a $100 fine and five points on a license. It was also the most commonly cited moving violation by the NYPD in 2012 [PDF].