s

Tag Archives: nypd

Off Duty NYPD Officer Kills One and Injures Three Others While Driving Drunk.

An NYPD officer is out on bail after driving drunk and killing a pedestrian and injuring three others in Brooklyn over the weekend. No matter who you are, when you get behind the wheel you should never be under the influence. Driving while under the influence can change your life and the lives of others in the blink of an eye. Always exercise good judgement and when in doubt call a designated driver or a cab home.

Please read the full article below:

Bystanders corralled a drunken off-duty cop after his speeding SUV killed a Brooklyn pedestrian and horribly injured three of his college pals in a gruesome wreck, cops and eyewitnesses said.

Officer Nicholas Batka’s vehicle was seen swerving in the seconds before impact. His runaway SUV tore the leg off one victim and left another impaled on a fence, witnesses said.

“The EMTs had to get a saw to remove the man impaled on the railing,” said witness Jaminah Kang, 35. “Another man (looked) like he took a chain saw to the knee.”

The inebriated second-year cop flashed his badge and slipped into his SUV’s passenger’s seat about 3 a.m. Saturday as the mangled victims writhed in agony on a bloodstained sidewalk in Williamsburg.

A cell phone video captured a man in a red shirt wagging a menacing finger at Batka, keeping the SUV door shut tight and the off-duty cop pinned inside.

“Don’t let him get out!” someone else shouted. “He’s going to run away!”

The sloshed cop was trapped inside the SUV — on the driver’s side by a utility pole he crashed into and on the passenger side by the enraged onlookers.

A 21-year-old man died at Bellevue Hospital after Batka lost control and the gray 2012 SUV Dodge Durango careened off Bedford Ave. just after making a right-hand turn from N. Eighth St.

Prosecutors identified the victim as Andrew Esquivel in charging documents, along with three survivors of the late night crash.

Sophia Tabachoun, 20, was listed in stable condition, while Divya Menezes, 23, was hospitalized at Bellevue in critical condition. She underwent surgery late Saturday after breaking both legs in the crash, officials said.

James Balchaunas, 24, was also hurt, but his condition was not immediately known.

Batka was charged with manslaughter, vehicular manslaughter, three counts of assault, driving while intoxicated, driving with impaired ability and driving on a sidewalk.

In a white T-shirt and blue jeans, he appeared somber with his head down at his arraignment late Saturday night in Brooklyn Criminal Court. He posted $300,000 bond, and was released. A judge ordered his driving license suspended.

Witnesses described a nightmarish scene of chaos and carnage in the darkness once the SUV jumped the curb and plowed into the group walking together along the sidewalk.

“I ran over and this girl’s leg was in half,” said Ryan Carpenter, 27, who was heading home when he spied the bloody crash scene.

“I took my shirt off and tried to stop her from bleeding while trying to calm her. She kept screaming.”

At least three of the victims were Massachusetts Institute of Technology graduates living in Williamsburg and headed for home after getting off the L train, said the sister of one victim.

“Help! Help! Help!” one anguished victim is heard howling during a chaotic six-minute video. “I don’t want to lose my leg! Help!”

An employee from the Bedford Gourmet Food store across the street rushed over with ice and towels.

“I didn’t know what to do,” said the store worker, who declined to give his name. “Everyone panicked. (The driver) was trying to back out, too, and kept going into the building. People were holding the driver from leaving.”

The shocking crash occurred just four hours before Batka was due to start a 7 a.m. shift with the Manhattan Transit Task Force following two days off, cops said.

Batka, 28, a former city correction officer, was arrested at the scene and suspended from the force, NYPD Inspector Scott Shanley told reporters at the accident site.

The officer refused to take a Breathalyzer test, sources told the Daily News. After denying he had been behind the wheel, he then asked to speak with his union rep from the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association, prosecutors said.

Some other friends walking with the four victims escaped unscathed when the SUV missed them by inches.

“The other two friends were literally one step ahead of them, so they didn’t get hit,” said eyewitness Kang, who called 911. “It was unreal. It was like an episode of TV come to life.

“I wasn’t even thinking about what I was doing.”

Police sources echoed the stories of witnesses, reporting that the force of the impact led investigators to believe Batka was speeding before jumping the curb.

According to witnesses, the drunken cop first attempted to throw the SUV in reverse after the vehicle crashed — but the car instead kept lurching forward, slamming into a townhouse stoop.

Batka, who joined the NYPD in January 2015, was listed in stable condition, police said.

Batka’s aunt and uncle said there were never any indications that the young cop had a problem with alcohol — and they appeared shocked by word of his arrest.

“I know a lot of people who shouldn’t be cops … that have the wrong attitude, but Nick is mellow Jell-O,” said his uncle Walter Leonick, a retired NYPD officer. “I never worried about him doing anything wrong.”

Batka took guardianship of his niece last year when his older brother died of a heart attack, and spent time caring for his mother. His brother, just 35 years old, keeled over during a Christmas party.

Leonick knew immediately that the Saturday accident was a bad situation, saying “He’s in a lot of trouble.”

Photo: NY Daily News

Memorial Day Crackdown yields nearly 12,000 tickets

During the Memorial Day Weekend holiday, police issued over 12,000 tickets! Now more than ever motorists should be extremely mindful of traffic laws.

Read the full article below:

State Police issued nearly 12,000 tickets in a Memorial Day weekend crackdown on drunken driving and other traffic violations, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said.

More than 600 of those tickets were issued on Long Island, officials said.Troopers increased patrols from Friday through Monday in an effort to curb drunken and distracted driving, speeding and other infractions, the governor’s office said in a June 1 news release.

Cuomo commended the efforts of the troopers and other law enforcement agencies for “their continued vigilance against this reckless behavior and their ongoing efforts to keep New York’s roadways safe.”

The 96-hour enforcement campaign was funded by the Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee, as State Police also conducted sobriety checkpoints and targeted speeding and aggressive drivers.

Of the 11,946 tickets written, 224 were for drunken driving, Cuomo’s office said.

Troop L, headquartered in Farmingdale, issued 613 tickets during the holiday weekend, including 18 for drunken driving and 131 for speeding.

A breakdown of tickets issued by troop is at on.ny.gov/1XQ8KHl.

County police agencies also cracked down on drunken driving over the holiday weekend.

Fifty drivers in Nassau County were arrested between 7 p.m. Friday and 7 a.m. Tuesday, police said.

Suffolk County police said patrols from 7 p.m. on Friday to 7 a.m. Tuesday resulted in 44 DWI arrests, including a sobriety checkpoint Friday night to Saturday morning in North Patchogue that resulted in a dozen arrests on the north service road of Sunrise Highway.

Photo: Newsday

NYPD is Working Overtime to Protect Bike Riders

The weather is getting warmer and New Yorkers are opting for bike riding instead of driving or taking the subway. This week Mayor DeBlasio is cracking down on motorists who drive or idle in stop lanes.

Read below for the full article:

The NYPD is cracking down on road hogs blocking bike lanes.

All 77 Police Department precincts will take part in a week-long crackdown that started Monday specifically targeting motorists blocking bike lanes or idling in no-standing zones. It’s part of a new Bicycle Safe Passage initiative to promote Mayor Bill de Blasio’s goal of Vision Zero.

“We believe in protecting everyone on our streets,” de Blasio said in a statement. “This targeted initiative will make sure New Yorkers on bikes have clear bike lanes and safe conditions as more and more people take to the streets.”

Launched during Bike Month, the NYPD wants to correct bad behaviors as summer cyclists hit the street.

“We see, as the weather gets better, more cyclists in New York City and we want to make sure they can utilize the bike lanes in a safe manner,” said NYPD Transit Chief Thomas Chan at a press conference Monday.

Since 1990, daily cycling trips in the city have increased by 320 percent, according to a Department of Transportation report released in May.

As more cyclists ride in the city, safe streets advocates have questioned the NYPD’s commitment to Vision Zero.

At March’s Vision Zero Conference, Police Commissioner William Bratton told the crowd that the idea of reaching zero traffic deaths would “probably remain elusive.”

“We are focusing on violations that can endanger our city’s cyclists, and making sure New Yorkers can safely travel on bike lanes throughout the five boroughs,” Bratton said in a statement supporting the initiative.

Chan said that the NYPD has remained dedicated since the mayor launched the initiative in 2014.

“In 2014…we actually reduced the number of traffic deaths by 15 percent and last year, in 2015, we reduced the number by 9 percent,” Chan said. “So we’ve been working towards the goal of reducing the total number of fatalities and injuries that are occurring on the streets of the city of New York.”

The enforcement blitz will run through Friday. Chan said that a focused, week-long window can be more effective than extending crackdowns longer. The NYPD hasn’t ruled out more crackdowns under the initiative, but will wait to see how the results turn out this week.

Photo: AmNY

Cop Driving in Deadly Staten Island Crash Had BAC Three Times Legal Limit

The New Jersey police officer, who hit a tractor-trailer head-on on a Staten Island highway last month, killing a fellow officer and a friend and critically injuring a third cop, had a blood alcohol content of .24 percent, three times the legal limit, law enforcement sources say.

Authorities had obtained a warrant to test Pedro Abad Jr.’s blood-alcohol content following the March 20 wrong-way crash on the West Shore Expressway.

The NYPD, who’s investigating the crash, had no comment on the toxicology results. A message was left with the Linden police officers’ union, and Abad’s lawyer had no comment, saying only his client was in the process of hiring a new attorney.

Abad, 27, was driving his fellow officers and friend on the wrong side of the expressway on the way back from a strip club when his vehicle slammed into the tractor-trailer, authorities said.

Hours before the crash, Abad had posted a photo on his Instagram page of three shot glasses filled with what he identified as “Jack Daniels Fire on the house.” Authorities said at the time it was “too premature” to speculate on what caused the accident.

Public records show Abad has been involved in eight accidents since 2005 and has two arrests for drunken driving in the last four years.

Abad was hospitalized in critical condition following the crash, which killed fellow Linden officer Frank Viggiano and friend Joseph Rodriguez.

Patrik Kudlac, another Linden cop riding in Abad’s Honda, was also hospitalized in critical condition after the crash.

The Union County prosecutor’s office has said it would hand off the probe into the driving record and employment history of Abad to avoid the perception of any conflicts of interest. The state attorney general’s office said the investigation will be handled by the Middlesex County prosecutor’s office.

Article Originally Posted on NBC New York

*Photo Credit: “NYPD Tron” By: Lee/Source: Flickr