A 4-year-old boy died at the hospital after he was struck by a driver in South Jamaica, Queens, Saturday evening, according to police.
The child, Demonte McDonald of Concourse Village, the Bronx, ran away from his mother and into the street at 147th Street, between 119th Avenue and Foch Boulevard, at 6:17 p.m. on Aug. 20, when a motorist heading north in a Toyota RAV4 SUV struck him, an NYPD spokesperson said.
The 32-year-old mom ran after Demonte trying to stop him, and was also hit by the driver, sustaining a foot injury.
Paramedics brought both pedestrians to Long Island Jewish Medical Center in stable condition, but at the healthcare facility Demonte passed away after he suffered what police called a medical episode.
Officials did not immediately disclose his specific cause of death, but police said he sustained internal injuries and severe head trauma from the collision.
The boy was nonverbal autistic, according to law enforcement sources.
The 33-year-old driver stayed on the scene of the crash, and police do not suspect any criminality and have not made arrests in this case.
New Yorkers aged 18 or younger have been dying at higher rates in crashes this year.
Traffic violence has claimed the lives of 17 children and 18-year-olds so far in 2020, more than any full calendar year since at least 2013, and the share of that age group more than doubled for the first six months of the year compared to last, from 5% to 11%, according to street safety advocacy organization Transportation Alternatives.
The organization’s director called on Mayor Eric Adams to quickly invest the $904 million budget for street safety improvements in this year’s budget.
“New York City has the proven tools to keep our children safe from traffic violence, we require leaders with the political will to quickly scale these measures to every corner of the city, and prioritize our most vulnerable communities,” said Danny Harris in a statement.
“Mayor Adams has made a historic investment of $904 million in street safety. Now, he must deliver these projects without delay, and before more children are killed on his streets,” Harris said.