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Queens Chronicle

Man gets six years for 2011 hit and run

11-year-old girl was hit getting off bus

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Posted: Thursday, March 14, 2013 10:30 am | Updated: 11:15 am, Thu Mar 21, 2013.

A Richmond Hill man was sentenced March 6 to six years in prison for a 2011 hit-and-run incident in which an 11-year-old girl was seriously, injured after being struck getting off a school bus.

Errol Gangaram, 26, of 124th Street, was convicted last month of second-degree assault, leaving the scene of an incident without reporting it, failing to stop at a steady red signal, unsafe lane change, second-degree reckless endangerment, endangering the welfare of a child, reckless driving, third-degree aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle and overtaking and passing a school bus.

According to trial testimony, Gangaram was traveling west in a silver vehicle on 103rd Avenue near 125th Street in South Richmond Hill on Dec. 19, 2011 when a vehicle in front of him stopped at the intersection because a school bus had stopped and displayed its red flashing lights. Gangaram then crossed over the double yellow line to pass the car and the bus on the left side.

Witnesses then saw 11-year-old Preeya Sahadeo hurled through the air after being struck and Gangaram fled the scene in his car, though no witness said they saw his car hit the girl. He was followed by another motorist for a number of blocks until Gangaram — who ran at least two red lights while fleeing — stopped near the intersection of 131st Street and 101st Avenue. There, he got out of his vehicle and made a call on his cellular phone. Police arrived and arrested him.

Sahadeo, meanwhile, was left lying in the street. She was taken to an area hospital with a skull fracture and remained there until she was transferred to a pediatric facility in April 2012. She was released and returned home on Dec. 31, 2012, but still suffers severe neurological damage and is confined to a bed and cannot walk or speak.

On top of his six-year prison term, Gangaram was also sentenced to three years’ post-release supervision and a $1,000 fine.

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