Woman who drove through Park Slope intersection, killing two children, charged

May 9, 2018 Meaghan McGoldrick
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A Staten Island woman was slapped with a 10-count indictment which includes manslaughter on Thursday, May 3 for allegedly mowing down pedestrians in a Park Slope crosswalk last month, killing two children.

According to the investigation, the defendant – 44-year-old Dorothy Bruns – who suffered a seizure at the time of the collision, was instructed not to drive after being hospitalized less than two months earlier after crashing her car into a parked vehicle.

On March 5, at about 12:40 p.m., Bruns was behind the wheel of a Volvo sedan, driving westbound on Ninth Street, when she stopped at Fifth Avenue. Then, the investigation says, while the light was still red, she pressed the accelerator, striking a group of pedestrians.

Abigail Blumenstein, 4, and Joshua Lew, 1, died from the impact while their mothers and another pedestrian also suffered injuries. Lew’s stroller was dragged down the street. Witnesses say that Bruns was driving with her head hanging back and first responders observed her foaming at the mouth, confused and unsteady on her feet. Bruns suffered another seizure in the ambulance and again at the hospital, evidence shows.

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“The loss of Abigail and Joshua was a horrific – and avoidable – tragedy that devastated their loved ones and hurt so many of their friends and neighbors. After a thorough investigation that started in the hours after the crash, my office indicted the driver for recklessly causing their deaths,” said District Attorney Eric Gonzalez. “Her alleged insistence on driving despite doctor’s orders and serious medical conditions that prevented her from safely doing so was not only irresponsible, it was unlawful. I intend to now hold her accountable and urge all drivers to heed instructions of medical professionals and never drive a car when told not to.”

Bruns will return court on June 13. She faces up to 15 years in prison if convicted of the top charge.

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