So sad. A young boy from Harlem was fatally struck by a truck on his way to school because the crossing guard left the intersection unattended. Do you think the crossing guard should be charged with the boy’s death?
Amar Diarrassouba, 6, was on his way to PS 155 when he was hit by a tractor-trailer at 7:54 a.m. while crossing the street at the intersection of First Avenue and East 117th Street in Harlem. The intersection’s crossing guard, Flavia Roman, was supposed to start her shift at 7:30 a.m., but left her post unattended.
Flavia, 55, returned to the post shortly after claiming she went home for a bathroom break, which was only a half-block away. She told police that she had left her post without getting permission because of an “emergency.”
Flavia, who has been an employee of the NYPD since 2003, appears to have a clean employment record. However, parents raised concerns about the crossing guard’s attentiveness.
“I would never see her [working]. Whenever someone’s crossing, she’s talking to other people,” claims Oscar Paz, a parent of a PS 155 student. “She’s a person who didn’t do her job well,” he adds. “Instead of walking children across the road, she’s distracted and talking to people.”
The driver of the truck, Robert Carroll, told police he didn’t see Amar crossing the street. The trucker, 42, had a green light, although the boy had a walk signal and the right of way. After the accident, Robert continued driving north on First Avenue and was flagged down by witnesses who notified him of the accident.
A nearby biker stopped and helped move the boy to the sidewalk shortly after the accident. “The boy was bleeding from the head, and he tried to stop the blood. He just picked him up off the street and brought him to the sidewalk,” Samar Preet, a nearby gas station worker, explains. “The guy on the bike did everything he could to save the kid.”
The boy was taken to Harlem Hospital in cardiac arrest, but was unable to be saved. The crossing guard has been suspended for 30 days unpaid and could potentially face criminal charges for abandoning her post.
HollyMoms, do YOU think the crossing guard should be held accountable for the boy’s death? Vote below!
— Jenny Pickard
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