A pickup truck making a right turn at a Queens intersection hit and killed a baby girl in her stroller Thursday night, police say.
The baby's mother was pushing the stroller across 23rd Avenue in East Elmhurst when the truck turned from 94th Street and hit the stroller, police say.
The driver stayed on the scene. Police identified him as 44-year-old Wallace Ramirez of Massachusetts. Authorities charged him with failure to yield to a pedestrian and failure to exercise due care.
Witness Reese Fluellen, who knows the mother because their children play together, says he'd said hello just seconds earlier.
"As I turn the corner, I was walking maybe 10, 15 seconds, I hear a loud crunch, I hear brakes from the truck," he said. "I hear screaming, 'You ran over my baby, You ran over my baby.'"
Fluellen immediately ran back, along with other bystanders who tried to help. The baby, identified as Skylar Perkins of Queens, was unresponsive and appeared not to be breathing, and the mother was hysterical.
Clearly shaken, Fluellen said, "I have a child the exact same age. Our kids play together. It just really hits home."
"There's nothing like seeing a mother think that she's lost her baby. It's one of the most heartbreaking things I've ever seen," he said.
Responding police officers rushed the baby to Elmhurst General Hospital in the back of their patrol car.
The girl, who had severe trauma to the head and body, was pronounced dead at the hospital.
The baby's mother had been walking in the crosswalk with the child secured in the stroller, according to police. Fluellen said the driver didn't appear to realize what had happened until he stopped and got out.
"When he got out, when he saw the baby, his reaction was just like [shocked]," said Fluellen. "I see how high the truck is, I'm guessing from where he was sitting he couldn't see it because he hit her from the other side of the vehicle."