Man in coma, allegedly due to texting driver

September 21, 2010 3:16:27 PM PDT
A hardworking immigrant and father in Brooklyn is in a coma, after he was hit by a driver who was allegedly texting behind the wheel.

Anna Lin is living the worst 48 hours of her life.

Her father, Tian Sheng Lin is in a coma and on life support.

He was struck by a 19-year-old driver who was allegedly texting behind the wheel.

"I hope he could wake-up because we still need him," Anna Lin said.

The family owns a tiny Chinese restaurant on East 16th Street in Midwood.

Police say Mr. Lin had just left on his moped to deliver the last order of the night, when he was struck from behind while stopped at a traffic light on Avenue P.

"I only ask the police, 'Who fault was that?' And the police tell me a hundred percent the girl's fault," Lin said.

"The girl" was later identified as 19-year-old Nechama Rothberger, who lives on East 24th Street.

No one answered the door when Eyewitness News went knocking, and her lawyer would only say that it was an accident.

Anna says it's all too painful to think about.

"Now I only want my dad to wake-up. Nothing else I care about. Nothing, nothing else is more important than my dad waking-up," Lin said.

Mr. Lin emigrated with his family from China 15 years ago.

He had been working practically day and night, seven days a week to support his family.

He was living his own version of the American dream, in a richly diverse neighborhood where many of his fellow merchants were in tears Tuesday.

"I'm crying, can't help him," said Nihat Albarbak, a restaurant owner.