Orange County News
For Immediate Release Contact: Robert Conflitti
Tuesday, June 19, 2018 845.615.3651, 845.238.7274c
District Attorney Hoovler Announces Guilty Plea in
Kiryas Joel Hit-and-Run Case
Defendant Hit an Eight-Year-Old Boy, Then Fled the Scene
Orange County District Attorney David M. Hoovler, announced that on Monday, June 18, 2018, Yudah Zimmerman, age 24, of Kiryas Joel, pled guilty to the Class E felony of Leaving the Scene of an Incident Without Reporting, in connection with a hit-and-run accident that Zimmerman caused on November 9, 2016. Zimmerman faces a sentence of up to six months in the Orange County Jail, together with five years’ probation, when he is sentenced on August 24, 2018, before County Court Judge Robert H. Freehill.
When he pled guilty, Zimmerman, a fish deliveryman in Kiryas Joel, admitted having reason to know that he struck an eight-year-old boy with his fish-delivery truck on November 9, 2016, on a street in the Village of Kiryas Joel. Zimmerman then left the accident scene, without reporting it and without providing information that is required by law to be provided. The accident resulted in serious physical injury to the boy, who lived on the street where Zimmerman struck him. The boy’s injuries included a lacerated liver, fractured pubic bone, fractured orbit of the eye, fractured nasal bone, and a lung contusion, all of which required that the boy be hospitalized for nine days at Westchester Medical Center. The New York State Police, following a year-long investigation, gathered sufficient evidence to support a grand jury indictment charging that Zimmerman was the operator of the vehicle involved in the incident.
District Attorney Hoovler thanked the New York State Police for their efforts in solving the case, and for their assistance in the prosecution.
“The rules of the road, which we all must live by, require that we own up to the accidents that we are involved in,” said District Attorney Hoovler, “whether we are at fault or not. When motorists flee the scenes of traffic incidents, law enforcement authorities are prevented from fully investigating those incidents, often making it difficult to assess fault and to ensure that injured parties are cared for and compensated. Those unlawful flights from accident scenes also require the waste of investigative resources to identify motorists involved in those incidents. It was only because of diligent police work that this defendant was identified as the involved operator and brought to justice for his crime.”
The case is being prosecuted by Senior Assistant District Attorney Maryellen Albanese.
A criminal charge is merely an allegation that a defendant has committed a violation of the criminal law, and it is not evidence of guilt. All defendants are presumed innocent and entitled to a fair trial, during which it will be the State of New York’s burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.