A driver who struck and killed a 90-year-old woman in Chinatown earlier this month won't face charges, police said on Tuesday.
According to the NYPD, Ngan Leung was crossing the Bowery on November 15th when she was struck by a driver making a left turn from Bayard Street. Leung was in the crosswalk at the time of the collision and had the light, according to police. She was transported to Bellevue Hospital, where she "succumbed to her injuries" six days later, police said.
The driver remained at the scene and was not charged. According to Transportation Alternatives, the collision appears to be a result of the driver's failure to yield—a common, though rarely enforced, violation committed by left-turning drivers.
"Intersections are among the most difficult places to protect vulnerable street users, so it's incumbent on drivers to exercise due care when turning," spokesperson Joseph Cutrufo told Gothamist.
News of the pedestrian's death was announced by the NYPD on Monday. Hours later, just around the corner from the crosswalk where Leung was fatally struck, a driver backed his minivan onto a sidewalk, killing one and injuring six others.
Then ENFORCE PEDESTRIAN RIGHT OF WAY. #VisionZero is a joke if you don’t.
— (((Kelly Govt Approved White Person Lincoln))) (@ExitPass) November 27, 2018
Police initially dubbed the crash an accident. But after reporters obtained surveillance footage of the incident, the driver was charged with seven counts of failure to yield, failure to exercise due care, unsafe backing of a vehicle, and driving on/across a sidewalk.
On Tuesday morning, Mayor Bill de Blasio took to Twitter to trumpet his ongoing commitment to achieving Vision Zero. "A full NYPD investigation is underway," he wrote. "We cannot accept loss of life on our streets as inevitable."
A spokesperson for the NYPD would not say whether the investigation into Leung's death was ongoing, and did not respond to further questions.
UPDATE: Following publication of this story, a spokesperson for the NYPD told Gothamist that they'd issued the driver a summons for failure to yield. The spokesperson did not answer follow up questions about when the summons was issued, or why that information was not originally conveyed. We regret the confusion.