A baby delivered prematurely after his parents were killed in a New York City hit-and-run accident died Monday, a community spokesman said, while the search for the driver who fled on foot narrowed in.
The infant had been in serious condition after doctors performed a cesarean section on his mother to deliver him. The boy died early Monday, said Isaac Abraham, who serves as a spokesman for the city’s conservative Orthodox Jewish community.
Police said they were searching for the driver of a BMW, 44-year-old Julio Acevedo, who fled on foot after slamming into a cab at an intersection, killing the young pregnant woman and her husband on the way to a hospital.
“We in the community are demanding that the prosecutor charge the driver of BMW that caused the death of this couple and infant … with triple homicide,” Abraham said in a statement. “This coward left the scene of the accident not even bothering to check on the people of the other car.”
The cause of the crash remained under investigation. The driver of the BMW was expected at least to face charges of leaving the scene of an accident.
Police initially believed the BMW driver had a passenger, but they said Monday he was alone in the vehicle, which was traveling more than 60 mph (96 kph), twice the speed limit in the area.
The cab was at a stop sign, but it was unclear if it had stopped, police said.
New York City’s ultra-Orthodox Jewish community, the largest outside of Israel, wept at the couple’s funeral Sunday, just hours after the couple’s deaths. Jewish law calls for burial of the dead as soon as possible. The community of more than 250,000 has strict rules governing social customs and interaction with the outside world.
Nachman and Raizy Glauber, both 21, had been looking forward to welcoming their first child. On Saturday, Raizy Glauber “was not feeling well, so they decided to go” to the hospital, said Sara Glauber, Nachman Glauber’s cousin. Abraham said the Glaubers called a car service because they didn’t own a car, which is common for New Yorkers.
In the crash, the cab’s engine ended up in the backseat, where Raizy Glauber, who was seven months pregnant, was sitting before she was ejected, said Abraham, a neighbor of her parents. Her body landed under a parked truck, witnesses said. Nachman Glauber was pinned in the car, and emergency workers had to cut off the roof to get him out, witnesses said.
Both were pronounced dead at hospitals, and the medical examiner said blunt-force trauma was the cause. The cab driver was treated for minor injuries and released.
Ellen Borakove, spokeswoman for the city medical examiner’s office, said the baby’s death was caused by extreme prematurity due to maternal blunt force injuries.
Neighbors and friends said the baby had weighed only about 4 pounds (1.8 kilograms).
Police said the registered owner of the BMW, who was not in the car, was charged with insurance fraud. Police said Takia Walker, 29, was arrested Sunday.
A person familiar with the investigation said Walker bought the car legally then gave the car to a man, and detectives were looking to talk to him. He wasn’t driving at the time of the accident and had either lent or rented the car out to the driver, the person said. The person was not authorized to speak publicly about the accident and spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity.
Acevedo served about eight years in prison on a manslaughter charge in a shooting death and violated parole once after that, according to a state department of correction spokeswoman.
No one answered the door Monday at either Walker’s or Acevedo’s homes.
(Associated Press writer Verena Dobnik contributed.)
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