A car flipped on 8th Avenue in Hell’s Kitchen this evening after speeding down a bike lane, hitting a pedestrian, colliding with a pedicab and damaging three other cars. Driver Ibrahim Dembele, 27, was taken to Bellevue Hospital for testing — and cops told Streetsblog he was later charged with drunk driving, leaving the scene of a crash and reckless driving.

The flipped car on 8th Avenue. All photos & video: Phil O’Brien.

NYPD reported that the vehicle originally fled after hitting the pedicab and another vehicle at W40th Street on 8th Avenue. The vehicle then headed north on 8th. Two NYPD officers on foot patrol at W43rd Street and 8th Avenue followed the vehicle and apprehended the driver at the scene. The driver was taken to Bellevue Hospital for evaluation.

The initial incident happened just at around 7:55pm near the Port Authority Bus Terminal when the car collided with a pedicab and another vehicle.

YouTube video

The driver fled the scene and was then seen speeding through a red light at W47th Street on 8th Avenue and then racing along the bike lane. The vehicle struck a pedestrian, flinging him into the air, before the car hit a traffic median at W48th and flipped over halfway down the block near the Times Square Diner & Grill.

“I thought it was a high-speed chase, but it was just a gentleman driving a black sports car that was speeding up Eighth Avenue,” an eyewitness, who asked to be identified by his first name, Amory, told us. “He ran the light at 47th, jumped into the bike lane, and just floored it and sped up going through the bike lane. There was one guy that just happened to be walking across, not really expecting a car. He flipped in the air, but it kind of twisted his leg or broke his leg. I was at the next block, basically waiting to cross on my bike. I would have been in the driver’s path had I gone a little earlier.”

First responders attend to the injured man on 8th Avenue.

Amory explained that after hitting the pedestrian: “he hit this little median and the car flipped to one side and hit another car, then flipped over completely.”

The driver got out of the overturned vehicle before being stopped on the opposite side of 8th Avenue by the two policemen.

Police apprehended the driver of the speeding vehicle across 8th Avenue.

Amory went to the help of the pedestrian who had been hit. “He thought he was gonna die. He was saying ‘Oh my God, Oh my God, I’m going to die’. He was really shook up. I told him ‘you’re going to survive’,” Amory said.

Police reported that three other cars had been damaged in the crash.

The flipped car on 8th Avenue this evening.

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  1. welcome to bail/police reform….everyone wants it till one of their loved ones are hurt, murdered, robbed or raped….till next time!!!!

    1. Fred, “police reform” is not the same as “no police” or “abolishing the police.” You can call for reform (like an end to excessive force, addressing implicit racial biases, holding officers more accountable, etc) while still supporting law enforcement. They’re not mutually exclusive.

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