QUEENSBRIDGE — A hearing will be held next month by the Department of Motor Vehicles to review a 2013 crash in Long Island City in which a Japanese student was fatally stuck by an NYPD patrol car.
An attorney for the family of the victim, 24-year-old Ryo Oyamada, had requested the hearing in a letter to the DMV earlier this month, as the two-year anniversary of Oyamada's death approaches in February.
"It's really important to the families, and for society at large, that there is some level of government review of fatal crashes," even if there is no criminality, lawyer Steve Vaccaro told DNAinfo New York. "Driving is a privilege, not a right."
The hearing was first reported by Gothamist. DMV safety hearings are held to review the driver's conduct and determine whether any action should be taken in regards to their license, according to Vaccaro.
Oyamada was killed on Feb. 21, 2013 when he was hit by a police car as he crossed 40th Avenue between 10th and 11th Streets in Queensbridge. Police at the time said the squad car had been responding to a 911 call at the time of the crash.
Video of the scene of the crash in the moments before Oyamada was struck, obtained by the family's attorney through a Freedom of Information Law request, captured an NYPD patrol car that did not have its emergency lights on.
Vaccaro is requesting permission to present evidence at next month's DMV hearing, "because of the conflicted position of the NYPD in a proceeding involving the culpability of a police officer," according to a letter he sent to the agency Friday.
The NYPD did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment about the crash, or about the upcoming DMV hearing, which will take place at 9 a.m. on Feb. 23 at the DMV's Queens South Office.