An innocent bystander was killed when an enraged group of men in a minivan sped down a sidewalk after being denied from purchasing alcohol at a liquor store in the Bronx. Derrick Callender, 32, is a father of five and was standing near his stoop on E233rd Street with his family, including his 2-year-old daughter and 9-year-old son. He was holding a DVD he was going to watch with his kids and accidentally dropped it. That's when the unthinkable happened.
When he went to pick it up, a minivan came barreling down the sidewalk fatally hitting him.
Apparently moments before Henry Lawrence, 22, was trying to purchase booze at the nearby liquor store but didn't have ID on him so he was denied. He left the store in a rage and returned with a knife to threaten the owner. He was chased out by another man with a baseball bat. It was then that Lawrence got into his double parked 1998 Toyota Sienna and picked up two friends on the street. Reportedly, one of the friends ended up behind the wheel of the minivan which then jumped the sidewalk, speeding down it in what many guessed was an attempt to hurt the liquor store owner or the man who chased Lawrence out with the bat. Instead, the car struck and killed Callender in front of his young children and family.
When the minivan drove down the sidewalk, many others on the street hurried to safety. Another family walking by with a child in a stroller were almost hit before the vehicle slammed into Callender, propelling his body in the air.
Horrifying. Senseless. Callender's sister-in-law Christina Flores who was on the porch at the time said, "We were sitting here joking about his birthday coming on Monday. He dropped the DVD he bought to watch with the kids and he went to pick it up. He didn’t even see it coming."
We can be thankful that Callender's children were not physically harmed from this tragedy, but they are suffering and now without a dad.
The men in the minivan ended up crashing into a construction wall after it struck Callender who later died at Montefiore Hospital. They all fled from the vehicle, but Lawrence turned himself in. He didn't admit to driving the car, nor tell the police who was behind the wheel. He was charged with possession of a weapon and menacing.
My heart goes out to the family, and those young children who had to witness this tragedy. I hope the others responsible are caught and charged.
Have you ever witnessed a hit-and-run?
Image via CBS