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    Friday, August 12, 2022

    Ice cream truck driver strikes, drags 11-year-old boy in NYC

    NEW YORK — An 11-year-old boy was clinging to life Saturday after he was struck and then dragged by an unlicensed Mister Softee ice cream truck driver while riding his new bike down the block from his Brooklyn home, police and witnesses said.

    Bleeding from his head and struggling to breathe through his collapsed lungs, little Tyson Anderson turned to a gathering crowd at the crash site at Sutter Avenue and Hendrix Street in East New York with imploring eyes Friday evening, wondering if he was going to see another day.

    “He said ‘Am I gonna die? Am I gonna die?’” witness Brian Franklin, 65, told the Daily News Saturday. Tyson managed to give Franklin his address, but the panicked child couldn’t remember his phone number.

    “Everybody came out,” Franklin recalled. “They went banging on doors, and the mother came up, by the time she came up he was already in the ambulance.”

    Tyson was in the crosswalk about 6:45 p.m. when the ice cream truck clipped him, knocking him off his bike, cops were told.

    The child and his bike fell underneath the ice cream truck and were dragged for a short distance before a group of young girls witnessing the carnage ran up to the truck, demanding he stop, horrified witnesses told police.

    Tyson suffered serious injuries to his head and body and was rushed to Brookdale University Medical Center, where he underwent surgery Saturday, his heartbroken father Anthony Anderson said outside the family’s apartment down the block from the crash scene.

    “His lungs collapsed, he broke a couple of bones by his lung,” Anderson, 29 said. “(The doctors) just fixed it this morning.”

    Tyson had just graduated elementary school, said his father, who had just moved his family to Hendrix St. The bike Tyson was riding was a gift from his school for his exemplary grades.

    “He just bought some trophies home,” said the proud dad, exhausted after a night in the hospital. “(He got) like first place for everything. He’s one of eight but he’s the smartest kid you could know.”

    The ice cream truck driver, who was identified as Bronx resident Juan Remigio, 58, was taken into custody after cops determined he was driving with a suspended license, cops said.

    The ice cream truck was heading south on Hendrix Street and came to a stop at Sutter Avenue. He proceeded through the intersection just as Tyson pedaled into the intersection, cops said. The child was in a marked crosswalk when the ice cream truck hit him.

    Anderson was outside and recalled seeing a commotion down the block.

    “I saw the guy keep going and the girls were chasing the truck,” he said. “I put one and two together, I thought he was running. But the girls made him stop, I want to thank them for that.”

    Remigio didn’t say anything to police when he was taken into custody. Neighbors suspect that he didn’t realize he had hit the child until neighbors tried to stop him.

    “People started to shout, but he didn’t seem to know what they were shouting about,” said one neighbor, who wished not to be named.

    Cops charged him with aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, failure to yield to a pedestrian and failure to use due care. His arraignment in Brooklyn Criminal Court was pending Saturday.

    A person who answered the phone at the Brooklyn office of Mister Softee hung up twice when asked about the accident.

    “(Cars) usually fly through here, but it was an ice cream truck. It usually crawls through here,” Franklin said. “Everybody else, it’s like the Daytona Speedway. They need a speed bump, I hate speed bumps, but we need them.”

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