2006_07_van.jpgAfter a van from the Brooklyn Manor group home crashed on Wednesday, killing five residents and injuring five others, attention is now being turned to the driver, Guy Telemaque and the van operator, Altima. Patients at the Brooklyn Manor tell the Daily News that Thelemaque was "very clumsy. He was always winking at the girls and yelling at them. He didn't keep his eyes on the road." The NY Times looks at how van company Altima never checked Thelemaque's background - or verified his license, which may be why he was able to drive for them with his suspended license. Thelemaque told investigators that he lost control of the car as he swerved to miss another car, then crashed into a tree (which caused the van to catch fire), but another driver said "Mr. Thelemaque’s vehicle began drifting into her lane, suddenly sped up and then veered into the tree," according to an investigator who spoke to the Times.

The Daily News revisits the problems Brooklyn Manor had as well its current ones: The State Department of Health found "residents walking around with a foul odor, with urine soaked clothes, damaged rooms, no daily assistance with their upkeep, no coordination, and no case management" when the took control of the facility just two weeks ago. And its current residents, made up of the mentally ill and elderly, tells the Times they are there because their families have given up on them.