Driver in fatal Hudson Avenue crash: ‘I cry every night’

    The accident scene late afternoon on Saturday, May 27 (Photo: Kempter's Fire Wire)
    The accident scene late afternoon on Saturday, May 27 (Photo: Kempter’s Fire Wire/Dawn Aponte)

    The driver of the car involved in last month’s fatal accident on Hudson Avenue tells The Peekskill Post that, while the physical injuries she sustained from the crash are minor, the emotional fallout has been devastating.

    “I had some bruises on my chest,” Peekskill resident Maria Inga said through a family member who acted as a translator while standing in the doorway of her home Tuesday evening. “I went to the hospital. I feel very bad, very bad. I cry every night and haven’t been eating.”

    Inga, 54, said she did not know Zoila Zhingri, the 69-year-old Peekskill woman who died after a parked car hit by Inga’s vehicle lifted off of the ground and crushed her, or her family. Two of Zhingri’s family members—a toddler and 71-year-old man—were sent to the hospital in critical condition. Witnesses said that a woman whom they believe to be the mother of the toddler, was also taken to the hospital.

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    When asked to recount how the accident happened, Inga—who said she sustained injuries to her chest—said she told everything to the police and did not want to discuss any specifics in regards to the crash.

    Multiple residents who witnessed the accident told The Peekskill Post that a young girl, about five years of age, was in the vehicle with Inga at the time of the accident.

    One of those witnesses, Tammy Gordineer, said the State Trooper who was conducting a traffic stop when Igna sideswiped his car—causing her to hit the parked car that killed Zhingri—was not to blame for the accident as he and the pulled over car were located close to the curb. Gordineer said the Trooper pulled the male driver over because he was not wearing a seatbelt.

    Peekskill Chief of Police Eric Johansen, whose department has declined to release the name of the driver until a crash investigation is completed, chose not to comment on this article.

    On Monday of this week, three separate Freedom of Information Law (FOIL) requests asking for the name of the driver, the accident report and any and all correspondence within the Peekskill City government related to the May 27 Hudson Avenue crash were submitted to the city clerk. All three were denied on the basis that the information “would interfere with a pending law enforcement investigation and deprive a person of a right to a fair trial or impartial adjudication.”

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