A Richmond Hill woman was killed in an apparent hit and run by an alleged drunk driver from upstate last Friday evening outside the neighborhood’s largest Sikh temple.
At 7:01 p.m., 59-year-old Raj Chohan, was walking outside the Sikh Cultural Society headquarters, the large gurdwara at the intersection of 117th Street and 97th Avenue, when a 2013 Toyota Camry, heading northbound on 117th Street, struck her. The vehicle then fled the scene. EMS responded and took Chohan to Jamaica Hospital Medical Center where she was later pronounced dead.
An investigation revealed Chohan, who was born in India, was walking along parked cars in the street when she was hit by the Camry. A police vehicle had been parked nearby and pursued the car.
Police later arrested the suspect, Vishwanand Subryan, 23, of Schenectady, N.Y., whom they believe was driving the car when it hit the victim, at 115th Street and 101st Avenue — about three blocks from the site of the hit-and-run — without incident.
Subryan was charged with vehicular manslaughter, criminally negligent homicide, leaving the scene of an accident resulting in death and driving while intoxicated.
Flowers marked the location of the accident several days later. A neighbor said Chohan was visiting relatives nearby when she was hit after leaving their home. She had lived in the neighborhood until recently, when she moved about 13 blocks east to 130th Street.
The location of the incident is in the heart of a mostly-residential part of Richmond Hill that often becomes congested with vehicular and pedestrian traffic, especially when services or events are happening at the gurdwara. Drivers often use 117th Street to travel north through the neighborhood looking to avoid congestion on busy Lefferts Boulevard, two blocks to the east.