NEW YORK, Sept. 4 (UPI) — Former New York City Mayor David Dinkins has been sued by a bicyclist who said Dinkins hit him with a truck and drove away.
Rodrigo Garcia, 32, of the Bronx, said he suffered “serious and severe” injuries when Dinkins, driving south on York Avenue at 69th Street, ran into him. Garcia was on a bicycle at the intersection, according to the lawsuit filed in state Supreme Court in Manhattan.
Dinkins, 89, said he was driving his ailing wife Joyce to the hospital on June 30, and didn’t know he’d been involved in a crash until a bystander told him one half-block later, according to a statement from the former mayor Saturday.
Dinkins said, “a man came up to my car window and told me that my car had been hit by a bicycle.” Dinkins said he told the witness he would drive his wife to the hospital and return “once I got her to the ER.” When he returned to the crash scene, no one was there, he said.
“I was not aware of any contact between the bicycle and my car at the time it may have occurred,” Dinkins, who was the mayor from 1990 to 1993, said in the statement. “When I became aware of the incident, I not only returned to the scene, I also participated in the making of the police department accident report.”
Garcia, a former Le Gourmet grocery deliveryman, scoffed after hearing Dinkins’ version.
“You’re (89) years old,” Garcia told the Daily News. “You hit me, you don’t even realize you hit me? I completely understand that. I just think you should not be driving then. And now you’re destroying my life.”
Garcia said he is out of work and fighting his insurance company over medical bills and pain medication.
“Then you’re comfortable in your life, living in Midtown, and I’m here in the Bronx without anything because of you. It’s ridiculous,” he said.
A police report noted damage to the front quarter panel of Dinkins’ vehicle. No ticket was issued for leaving the scene of an accident.