An emergency medical technician with the Fire Department of New York was arrested and charged Tuesday with criminally negligent homicide in the fatal hit-and-run of a Brooklyn teacher last May, officials said.
Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez announced Tuesday that Tariq Witherspoon, 30, of Bushwick, had been arraigned in connection with the incident that left Matthew Jensen, 58, dead.
Jensen had been crossing the intersection of McGuiness Boulevard and Bayard Street at about 12:45 p.m. on May 18 when he was struck by a Rolls Royce, with the driver of the vehicle fleeing the scene, the DA's office said.
The NYPD said first responders took Jensen to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
According to NBC New York, the incident unfolded on Jensen’s 58th birthday.
The FDNY told NBC News on Wednesday that Witherspoon worked as an EMT for 11 years. He has been suspended without pay.
Witherspoon's arrest comes just over nine months after the incident. He was charged with “criminally negligent homicide, leaving the scene of an incident without reporting, second-degree reckless endangerment, reckless driving and excessive speed," the DA's office said.
“Matthew Jensen was a beloved teacher at P.S. 110 (in Greenpoint) who is sorely missed by his students, co-workers, friends and family," Gonzalez said in a statement. "We will now seek to bring this defendant to justice for his alleged actions, which left a community heartbroken.”
Witherspoon was released after posting $15,000 cash bail, NBC New York reported. He is expected back in court on April 27, Gonzalez office said.
The DA's office noted that an indictment is "an accusatory instrument and not proof of a defendant’s guilt."