Shortly after 6pm on Saturday evening, as Aileen Chen pedaled north along 21st Avenue in Mapleton, she was fatally struck by a BMW at the intersection of 62nd Street—after running a red light, according to the NYPD. The Stuyvesant sophomore was taken to Lutheran Medical Center, where she was pronounced dead.
The unidentified 29-year-old driver of the white BMW that struck her remained at the scene, and according to the Post will not face charges.
Chen’s cousin Dila Szeto told Gothamist that when her family went to identify the body:
They couldn’t recognize her face at all. It was totally swollen. Her clothes were all bloody and thrown away. The only thing we have left of her is her iPod and her watch.
Counting the cyclist killed on Fort Hamilton Parkway a month ago, and the 4-year-old killed on his tricycle in South Williamsburg in mid-May, this makes three bike deaths within a month. And with summer around the corner that rate is only likely to increase as more cyclists get their bikes out of hibernation and drivers get more irritable (which, anecdotally, really does seem to happen in summertime).