Around 2AM Sunday morning, a Dodge Caravan crashed into a light pole on the Harlem River Drive, killing 14-year-old passenger George Perez. Police say the van, which held a total of 10 people, was overloaded and that the 35-year-old driver lost control of the vehicle. The Caravan only holds 7 people.
The NY Times reports that the car swerved "with such force that George was thrown partly out a window from one of the rear seats. He was directly in the path of the light pole when the crash occurred, and was declared dead at the scene." Perez was not wearing a seat belt. Further, the driver, Anna Martinez, only had a learner's permit, which is only good during daylight hours.
Perez (who is referred to as George Lopez in the Post) was reportedly holding Martinez's 2-year-old daughter in his lap. A relative said that he saved the toddler's life. Martinez was issued a summons for driving without a license and operating an overloaded car.