Bay Ridge

NYPD recovers car and driver that drove off the 69th St. Pier in Bay Ridge

54-year-old man dies in apparent suicide

November 13, 2017 By John Alexander Brooklyn Daily Eagle
A photo at the scene where a car drove off the 69th St. Pier in Bay Ridge. It was later determined that a 54-year-old man drove to his death in a black SUV. Eagle photo by John Alexander
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The car that drove off the 69th Street Pier in Bay Ridge on Shore Road has been recovered, and the vehicle was driven by 54-year-old Louis Candell, who had not been seen since Sunday, Nov. 5, according to the Office of the Deputy Commissioner, Public Information (DCPI).

The police department’s Harbor Unit and scuba teams recovered the black 2010 Toyota RAV4 with a body inside from the waters on Thursday, Nov. 9, three days after the car drove off the pier. A post on State Sen. Marty Golden’s website said that the investigators ruled Candell’s death as a suicide. According to DCPI, Candell was an apparent suicide since he had been seen purposely driving his vehicle off the pier at an accelerated speed by the eyewitness.

A missing person report was filed on Wednesday, Nov. 8 for Candell, according to DCPI, and the report was filed by a 50-year-old woman who lived with Candell.

An eyewitness who was fishing near the scene reported that a male driver in a black sedan drove off the 69th Street Pier at approximately 1:30 a.m. on Monday, Nov. 6.

According to a spokesperson from the 68th Precinct Community Affairs Division, a 911 call was reported immediately after the man had driven his vehicle into the water. The NYPD and FDNY responded to the call. The eyewitness claimed that the car was sinking by the pier, according to an initial report, but later information indicated that the sedan was drifting from the shore toward the Verrazano Bridge.

The initial search began at 2:30 a.m. that Monday, with divers searching the waters for the vehicle and the victim before the rescue effort was suspended until 11 a.m., when conditions were better for the divers to resume their search for the victim in the harbor.  The police spokesperson said that the slack tide (a short period of time when the water was completely unstressed with no movement in the tidal stream) would be optimal at that time.

The recovery, which occurred on Nov. 9 at around 12:45 p.m., was first reported by Brooklyn Daily.


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