Shocking video shows the moments a New Jersey councilwoman allegedly plowed down a bicyclist while speeding through an intersection and kept going in an apparent hit-and-run accident.
Jersey City Councilwoman Amy DeGise is accused of failing to slow or stop her car after striking the cyclist at the intersection of Forrest Street and Martin Luther King Drive last week.
Traffic camera video released by city officials on Tuesday afternoon shows the black SUV allegedly driven by DeGise striking a man on a bicycle in the middle of the intersection on July 19 without ever slowing down before leaving the scene.
The man, wearing a helmet, backpack, yellow shirt and jean shorts, flipped over and slides off the windshield and then onto the pavement after the impact. The video shows him slowly getting up afterward, his mangled bike lying on the opposite side of the street.
The cyclist, identified as 29-year-old Andrew Black, told police he had a green light and the right of way, NJ.com reported, citing a crash report. In an interview with HudPost.com, Black reiterated that he had the right of way and said he suffered deep bruising and anxiety crossing the street after the incident.
WNBC reported that officials later said Black was mistaken, and he did not have the green light, but DeGise is still facing mounting calls to resign because she still did leave the crash scene.
“[That] someone of prestige would fall to a point where they would ignore the law they are demanding to uphold, and they are trying to clean our streets or whatever they are calling it, they can’t even do it themselves — that really upsets me,” Black told HudPost on Tuesday.
Despite facing criticism, a spokesperson for DeGise told news outlets on Friday that the councilwoman would not resign.
“Councilwoman DeGise was elected overwhelmingly just a few months ago and she has no intention of walking away from the commitment she made to serve the people of Jersey City. She will not resign and plans to complete her full term and continue in public service,” DeGise’s spokesman, Phil Swibinski, said in a statement obtained by Patch.com.
“Amy recognizes the calls that have been made for additional information and transparency,” Swibinski said. “She would very much like to address this situation more comprehensively, but there is a legal process that must play out first and she will not be making any additional public comment at this time.”
The statement added, “As she has said previously, she is thankful that no one was seriously injured and she fully intends to speak out more when the legal process is concluded. She will continue working hard to serve the people who elected her, just as she has since she was inaugurated in January.”
In an interview with NJ Spotlight News on Monday, Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop criticized DeGise’s move to leave the scene of the crash, describing it as a “tremendous mistake.”
Fulop did add, however, that DeGise took some responsibility for the incident.
The councilwoman at large reportedly claimed she hit her head during the crash and went to a police station several hours later to report the incident after leaving the scene.
Reporters reached out to Amy DeGise and her aides Thursday seeking added comment but have not heard back as of Sunday.