A reportedly out-of-control driver struck and killed two children as they walked inside of a crosswalk in New York City. The incident occurred at approximately 12:40 p.m. at Ninth Street and Fifth Avenue, according to New York Daily News.
Four-year-old Abigail Blumenstein and one-year-old Joshua Lew died after being struck by a vehicle while walking alongside their mothers, Ruthie Ann Blumenstein and Lauren Lew, who were also injured in the horrifying wreck.
Blumenstein, a Tony-winning Broadway star who is known by her stage name of Ruthie Ann Miles, was pregnant at the time of the tragedy.
The foursome was allegedly hit by Dorothy Bruns, who police say ran a red light and attempted to leave the scene of the crash but was stopped by witnesses.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Medics Rushed the Children to a Nearby Hospital, But They Could Not Be Saved
Miles and Lew were on their way back from a church event at a community center when the catastrophic event unfolded, the New York Post reported.
The women and children, along with a fifth victim were rushed by medics to New York-Presbyterian Hospital, where Abigail and Joshua succumbed to their injuries.
Though the extent of the survivor’s injuries are not known at this time, NY Daily News reported Miles as being “critically hurt.”
At the time of publishing it was unknown how far along Miles’ pregnancy was or if the unborn baby was harmed.
2. The Woman Accused of Causing the Tragedy Has a History of Running Red Lights, & No Charges Were Filed at the Time of Publishing
According to NY Daily News, Bruns, 44 has been cited for running red lights four times in just the last two years, indicating a disturbing pattern. The car she was allegedly driving had also been caught “speeding through a school zone four times in the last two years,” the publication added.
Police said the woman attempted to leave the scene of the horrifying crash but was stopped by witnesses.
“When they took her out, she was just standing there, like nothing,” Jennifer Muñiz told the Daily News. “No emotion. Not sad. Not crying. Not asking questions: ‘Is everybody all right?’ Not shaking. Nothing.”
Brun reportedly told police that the crash happened after she tried to avoid hitting a car by swerving out of the way.
At the time of publishing, no known charges had been brought against Brun.
3. Witnesses Described a Horrifying Scene, & a Pedestrian Died at the Same Location in 2016
Miles “was bleeding from her head. They had to cut her coat off,” bystander Leah Finnegan said, according to the New York Post.
Four-year-old Abigail “was flat on her back, and when the ambulance came, they were giving her CPR,’’ a witness, June Clark-Smith told the publication. “I ran to the [mom], telling her, ‘Please, Miss, stay down.’. . . She tried getting up on her knees and fell back down.’”
“Those two kids were ran over like dogs,” a witness told the NY Daily News.
Joshua’s stroller was reportedly dragged more than 350 feet by Bruns’ car.
The NY Daily News reported that a pedestrian died at the same intersection in 2016, and further reported “10 traffic injuries at that intersection since 2014,” citing city records.
4. Miles Won a 2015 Tony Award for Her Role in ‘The King and I’
According Miles’ website, the actress “played ‘Lady Thiang’ in the Tony Award winning revival of The King and I, for which she won the 2015 Tony Award for ‘Best Actress in a Featured Role in a Musical.’”
The actress’ biography describes an extremely talented and successful woman who hasn’t slowed down since receiving the prestigious award. The page states, in part:
Lately she has been playing around cross-country with the LA Philharmonic (Hollywood Bowl) and Boston Pops in Sondheim On Sondheim. She has also been singing with the NY Pops, San Francisco Symphony, and the Incheon Philharmonic Orchestra (S. Korea.) Most recently RuthieAnn will star in Chess at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. as Svetlana, singing the beloved musical classics ‘Someone Else’s Story’ and ‘I Know Him So Well.’
RuthieAnn last played on Broadway in Sunday In The Park With George starring Jake Gyllenhaal and AnnaLeigh Ashford at the reopening of the historic Hudson Theatre – the oldest, and now newest, Broadway theatre house!
5. She Is a Hawaii Native Who Lived in Brooklyn With Her Husband & Daughter
According to her website, Miles “hails from Kaimuki in Honolulu, Hawai’i, and moved to NYC for grad school in 2005.”
The site stated that Miles lived in Brooklyn along with her husband and their now-late daughter Abigail.
The woman’s Twitter and Facebook pages show a doting mother who appeared to lead a happy, fulfilling and eventful life.