78-Year-Old Woman Killed and Daughter Injured in West 98th Street Accident
By Ben Fractenberg and Tom Liddy
MANHATTAN — An elderly woman was killed Thursday and her daughter injured after they were hit by a car trying to back into a parking space on a crowded Upper West Side corner, officials and witnesses said.
The horrific accident unfolded at Amsterdam Avenue and West 98th Street just after 5 p.m., according to the FDNY.
Cops said that the victims, Yolanda Casal, 78, and her 41-year-old daughter, were crossing Amsterdam Avenue when driver Edwin Carrasco, 38, backed his 2008 Ford Explorer into them.
"The [elderly] lady flew up into the air," said witness David Gomez, 47. "When she hit the cement, all the blood started coming.
"They were trying to get the spot."
Carrasco, of Paterson, New Jersey, was charged with driving with a suspended license, unsafe backing, and failure to exercise due care.
Gomez said that the SUV was moving fast and that the women had the right of way.
"The older woman was really in bad shape," said a witness, Wyona, 65, who did not want to give her last name. "So much blood from her head."
Wyona said that the daughter appeared alert and was talking on her cell phone.
"It was horrible," she added.
Both of the victims were taken to St. Luke's Hospital where Casal was pronounced dead. Her daughter was in stable condition with broken ribs, according to family friends.
"She was a very sweet woman, hospitable," said Gamal Willis, 40, of Yonkers.
Willis and the daughter's husband were having dinner at a restaurant in the West Village when the accident happened.
"He was always with his wife," Willis said. "He got the phone call and left."