Four Queens Teenagers Killed in Long Island Crash
QUEENS — Four teenagers were killed in a horrific crash early Monday after their out-of-control SUV — driven by a 17-year-old boy without a driver's license — careened off a Long Island highway and slammed into several trees, state police said.
The teens were in a 2012 Subaru Impreza on the Southern State Parkway in Nassau County when the vehicle swerved across two lanes before veering off the road and into the trees, police said.
The passengers were ejected from the vehicle, police said. They were pronounced dead at the scene.
"It was a shock," said Somdat Bhawan, Christopher Khan's father. "[He was] a normal 18-year-old kid."
The others teens who died were identified as Peter Anthony, Neil Rajapa, and Darian Ramnarine, all of whom lived in Richmond Hill, according to the New York Daily News.
Khan and Ramnarine recently graduated from Richmond Hill High School, an education source said, while Rajapa graduated from Lincoln High school.
Joseph Beer, who was behind the wheel, was driving with a learner's permit, police said. Those with only learner’s permits must drive with an adult at least 21-years-old, according to the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles.
Beer, also a recent graduate of Richmond Hill High School, was the only survivor. He was transported to Winthrop Hospital on Long Island, where he is being treated for his injuries, police said.
Bhawan fought back tears Tuesday morning as he strung up blue and white tarps for a makeshift shelter in his backyard in preparation for a memorial Tuesday night.
Khan, who loved playing basketball, hoped to study accounting, Bhawan said.
Imo, a cousin who flew up from Florida after hearing of Khan's death, said his cousin was beloved by friends.
"He was an outgoing person and popular at school, said Imo, 25, who asked that his last name not be used.
State police are still investigating the accident.
At Richmond Hill High School, where officials were offering grief counseling, students were still stunned over the sudden loss.
"They were good kids," said Sateshee Persaud, 18.
Virendra Ramkissoon, 18, said he has struggled to eat and sleep since hearing of the crash.