The 11-year-old girl who was struck and killed by a driver in the Bronx on Tuesday afternoon was apparently crossing the street to bring her mother a cup of deli coffee, according to the NYPD and multiple media reports.
"We are hearing that this is something she normally does," an NYPD spokeswoman said.
A preliminary NYPD investigation found that the child, identified as Kyla Williams, was crossing 180th Street from the south just before 11:45 a.m. on Tuesday when a 35-year-old man behind the wheel of a 2014 black Toyota Camry struck her. The driver, who had been headed west on East 180th Street, remained on the scene—the intersection of 180th and Hughes Avenue. A police spokeswoman said Wednesday that the driver had a green light.
His name has not been released; no charges have been filed as of Wednesday.
"The mother saw the baby girl running toward her and then get hit," Miguel Ceverino, the owner of the deli Williams apparently came from, told the NY Post. According to Ceverino, Kyla's family have been regulars at the deli for more than a decade.
"She saw the whole thing," he added. "The baby was running toward the mother when the car hit her. [The] mother got out right away and ran to her. She was panicked and ran into the intersection screaming, crying. She couldn't talk, she wasn't making words, she was just making sounds. Everyone was crying. I ran to her. I was crying. She couldn't talk, just sounds, just crying."
Responding officers found Kyla lying in the road with trauma to her body. They transported her to St. Barnabas Hospital, where she was pronounced dead.
Kyla's mother, identified by the Post as Kwana Tawana Mapp, was inconsolable. "She's devastated," a neighbor told the tabloid. "She saw it. She's a wonderful mother. She loves her kids."
Another neighbor described Kyla as "so compassionate and nice. So patient and quiet." Her uncle, 22-year-old Jordan Reynolds, told the Daily News that Kyla had recently won a "100-book challenge" at her school—reading a book a day for 100 days. She also did gymnastics, and enjoyed dancing and karaoke.
The News acquired disturbing surveillance footage of the crash, which appears to show Kyla being struck in the crosswalk. According to the tabloid, Mapp was en route to doctor appointments for Kyla and her two-year-old son the morning of the tragic incident.