Police Commissioner reviews traffic flow after pedestrians struck on Upper West Side

Kemberly Richardson has the latest from the Upper West Side.
January 20, 2014 3:26:32 PM PST
Police are making traffic changes after a pedestrian was killed in an accident Sunday morning on the Upper West Side of Manhattan.

"I just can't image an 84-year-old is the one you want to pick for jaywalking," said the arrested jaywalker's son.

But that's just what happened to his father, Kang Chun Wong, as he was crossing against traffic Sunday Evening.

Witnesses say the 84-year-old seemed confused as police approached, cuffed, knocked him to the ground and hauled him away.

His son says his father didn't understand what was happening that he doesn't speak English.

The widower, who needed four staples to slow the cut in his head, is the latest to be ticketed as police target jaywalkers on the Upper West Side.

"I believe there were a bunch of rookie cops out there that don't know what to do, that's what's happened. (A bit heavy handed?) To say the least," the man's son said.

"I'm not aware of any excessive force at all, it was an unfortunate circumstance," Police Commissioner William Bratton said.

The stepped up enforcement in the area of 96th Street and Broadway follows a string of deadly accidents.

Flowers mark the spot near where Samantha Lee was hit.

The 26-year-old anesthesiology resident was heading to Columbia University Medical Center, and was not in the crosswalk.

But 9-year-old Cooper Stock was in the crosswalk, walking hand with his father when a taxi struck him down and Alex Shear, yet another person killed while crossing in the neighborhood.

"From a traffic planning perspective, it's a nightmare situation," Bratton said.

Given the violence, Police Commissioner William Bratton took a look for himself at an intersection where Eyewitness News watched all day as people carelessly broke the law.

Possible changes there Bratton says, are eliminating the left turn lanes, better lighting, and pedestrian flow to and from the subway.

On Sunday afternoon members of a pedestrian advocacy group marked the spot where, 10 days ago Alexander Shear was also hit by a tour bus and killed.