EAST VILLAGE — The accused drunk and drugged-up driver who mortally injured a deli worker when his car jumped a curb last June has been charged with murder, prosecutors said.
Queens resident Shaun Martin, 33, was high on PCP and methamphetamines when his Nissan Altima slammed into a Citi Bike rider and three bodega workers, including Mohammed Akkas Ali, 62, at the East Village Farm and Grocery on Second Avenue and East Fourth Street on June 19, 2013, according to the Manhattan District Attorney's office.
Ali, a father who worked at the flower shop in front of the deli, suffered serious brain injury and died more than six months later, on Jan. 1, of complications from his injuries.
Martin was previously charged with aggravated vehicular assault, reckless driving while ability impaired by a combination of drugs and alcohol and criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree.
District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr. said Ali’s death was "a tragedy that could have been averted.”
“This defendant is charged with seriously injuring multiple pedestrians, killing Mr. Ali, due to his extraordinarily reckless behavior," Vance said in a statement. "Intoxicated driving, whether by drugs or alcohol, is completely at odds with the prospect of making New York streets safe for pedestrians and drivers alike. My office will continue to aggressively prosecute vehicular violence whenever supported by the evidence.”
East Village resident Chad Marlow, who set up a fund to help the Ali’s family pay for his medical costs, said he was glad to see the murder charges against Martin, though it wouldn't bring Ali back.
“In some respects my response is almost a numb one,” he said. “On another level, it is critically important that the DA’s office deters this kind of reckless behavior and on that level, I thoroughly support and congratulate the DA’s office on that decision."