A pedestrian was critically injured Thursday in New York City’s Central Park when a cyclist slammed into her as she tried to cross a busy intersection, police said. The New York Post has reported that the woman is now "brain-dead."
Jill Tarlov, 59, of Fairfield, Connecticut, was in the city shopping for a birthday gift for her daughter. Around 4:30 p.m. she tried to cross the park’s West Drive near 63rd Street. That’s when Jason Marshall slammed into her while traveling at high speed on his $4,000 racing bike.
Witnesses said he was riding fast and hunched over the bike’s brakeless aero-bars at the time of the accident.
Tarlov, who is the wife of CBS executive Michael Wittman, was rushed to New York Presbyterian Hospital - Weill Cornell Medical Center.
It is unclear if Marshall, a 31-year-old saxophone player, or Tarlov was at fault. Others at the scene weren’t sure, but did say that the site of the accident is a dangerous spot.
“There’s a lot of traffic. A lot of people. It’s Central Park so you have to be careful,” bicyclist Chris Wershoven told CBS-New York.
Some say that cyclists riding in the road, as Marshall was, ride too fast and don’t follow traffic laws.
“These guys think that they have entitlement and they don’t ride in the bike lanes,” one source told the New York Post.
“He was riding in the car lane and yelling: ‘Get out of the way! Get out of the way!’ ” said another who claimed to witness the accident.
“She went down pretty hard,” said Tom Langman, another witness. “The right side of her face looked very bad. There was blood all over her.”
Marshall remained at the scene. He was last reported to be at the Central Park Precinct station house where police were discussing possible charges with the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office.
Thursday night, Tarlov was reportedly still in critical condition with head injuries and being kept alive by a ventilator. Her husband was distraught.
“She was my wife. She was the best,” Wittman told the New York Daily News.