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A bus driver has been arrested and charged after a 15-year-old girl was killed in a hit-and-run in Brooklyn on Monday morning.Police arrested the driver, 55-year-old Brooklyn resident Aleksandr Patlakh, and charged him with failing to stop for a pedestrian and not using due care. He was issued an appearance ticket at the desk.
According to authorities, the suspect did not turn himself in; instead, the police tracked him down and took him into custody somewhere in Brooklyn.
Witnesses say the bus had children on board when the incident occurred shortly before 8 a.m.
The bus was transporting the children to a nearby Jewish school, as classes are still open for private schools.
The driver was making a slow right turn at the intersection of Bedford Avenue and Quentin Road in Sheepshead Bay.
Aleksandr Patlakh Arrested and Charged
Police say Aleksandr Patlakh, 55, was charged with failing to yield to a pedestrian and not using due care. Zatulovska was apparently trying to cross the street when Patlakh allegedly hit her and ran away from her.
The Department of Transportation says that 60% of pedestrian fatalities last year were the result of serious offenders, including those leaving the scene of an accident, drivers without a valid license, drivers with multiple convictions, and drivers with prior DWIs.
The victim, identified as 15-year-old Antonina Zatulovska, had the right of way and was in the crosswalk when she was struck.
Eyewitness News reporter CeFaan Kim posted a video of the school bus on his Twitter account.
The 15-year-old girl was found lying on the road.
“I heard the screaming or yelling and then I started going down this side,” a witness said. “People started activating 911 and emergency services and within 10 seconds I already saw some of the private ambulance companies and some of the private volunteers. They responded immediately.”
Transportation Alternatives Executive Director Danny Harris issued a statement in response to the incident:
“We are heartbroken and angry, and send our deepest condolences to the loved ones of the teenager killed outside a school in Sheepshead Bay this morning. Whether they’re crossing the street, standing at bus stops, or being pushed in strollers, traffic accidents continue to kill our children and remain the leading cause of injury deaths for children in the United States.