A 68-year-old Uber driver died in an accident shortly after a pedestrian beat him over the head with a hockey stick in New York’s Chelsea district on Saturday, Nov. 11, according to reports.
A Manhattan resident, Kohji Kosugi, 39, was arrested on Sunday in connection with the incident and charged with manslaughter, according to Daily News.
The suspect became enraged after driver Richard Tolk overshot the crosswalk near the Chelsea Piers Sports & Entertainment Complex around midnight on Saturday, NBC reported. Kosugi allegedly struck Tolk’s car with a hockey stick, prompting the driver to get out of the car and confront the suspect. An altercation ensued, during which Kosugi hit Tolk in the head with the hockey stick, according to NBC.
“He was hit in the head, he fell to the ground, the guy put his foot on his chest, held him on the ground,” said Jose Viloria, a member of the New York State Federation of Taxi Drivers, speaking at a press conference on Nov. 12, reported NBC.
“The attacker is a coward and should be in jail,” Viloria said at the conference. “Beating an elderly man with a hockey stick is unforgivable.”
After the fight, the suspect ran off, while Tolk got back in his car, drove for several blocks and then collided with a median, said police. He was later transported to the hospital and pronounced dead. It is not clear whether it was the blow from the hockey stick or crash-related trauma that killed the man. The cause of death is expected to be announced following an assessment by the New York City Medical Examiner’s office.
The incident was captured by cameras at the Chelsea Piers sports complex. Police were able to identify the suspect because of the hockey stick that was used in the attack, CBS reports.
According to the New York State Federation of Taxi Drivers, Tolk had a license with the Taxi and Limousine Commission and was working for Uber at the time, says NBC.