Driver Who Killed Toddler On Sidewalk Released Without Bail, Says ‘Accidents Happen’
The unlicensed motorist who crushed a 1-year-old with an SUV after jumping a curb in the Bronx on Tuesday has been released without bail.
Kier Boneparte, 22, was arraigned in Bronx Criminal Court late Wednesday on charges of criminally negligent homicide, reckless driving, and unlicensed driving. “Accidents happen,” he told reporters, following the hearing. “I’m sorry. I don’t want to talk to nobody.”
Boneparte was driving in the Williamsbridge section of the Bronx when he lost control of the vehicle near East 215th Street and White Plains Road, police said. After smashing into an empty parked car, he jumped the curb, pinning the 20-month old victim, Djeneba Magassa, against the wall and killing her.
According to family members, Boneparte was in the process of studying for his learner’s permit. It’s unclear who owns the vehicle.
“He doesn’t know how to drive,” a cousin told the Daily News. “If you leave the door open, the kid is going to want to learn to drive. He was learning to drive.”
TV EXCLUSIVE WITH COUSIN OF DRIVER WHO KILLED TODDLER: The cousin, who wished to remain nameless, defended 22 year old Kier Boneparte who he says didn’t know how to drive when he hit and killed a 1 year old girl in the Bronx, Tuesday. @News12BX pic.twitter.com/sIz4pACaMt
— Anthony Carlo (@AC_TV12) September 19, 2019
Boneparte’s mother told the outlet that she’d lost another son in a crash over a decade ago. “I send the mother and her family my condolences, because I have been in that situation with my other son,” she said. “I’m truly sorry she had to experience this tragedy. My son was killed by a car in the Bronx.”
The woman added that her son “definitely was feeling down, he was very sad,” prior to the crash.
According to the Post, Boneparte was living temporarily in the same building as the Magassa family, just a few blocks from the site of the tragedy.
He describes himself as a rapper on his Facebook page, and claims to have previously worked at NYCHA and the city’s Department of Design and Construction. Neither agency has any record of Boneparte working with them.
On Wednesday, mourners erected a small memorial for the victim at the site of her death.
Boneparte is due back in court on October 8th.