BUFFALO, N.Y. – Police in Buffalo have released street surveillance video that shows a car swerving toward a group of people and plowing into a teenager, sending him flying head over heels into the air.
Three men were walking in the street around 3 a.m. Thursday when a car approached them. The video shows the men dashing for the sidewalk. The car is seen veering onto the sidewalk, where it hit an 18-year-old and narrowly missed the other two men.
The victim, Victor Jerez of Buffalo, was flung over the car and landed out of camera range. He was taken to a Buffalo hospital, where he was treated for multiple injuries and released, police said.
"The footage is extremely graphic," Mayor Byron Brown said at a news conference Monday. He said he was releasing the video in response to a spate of hit-and-run accidents in the region in recent days, including one in the suburban town of Lancaster that killed a 14-year-old boy on his bicycle.
"The purpose for showing this video footage is to dramatize how dangerous hit and run accidents are," the mayor said.
Police arrested the 19-year-old driver in Thursday's accident, Tornubari Gbaraba, within five minutes after witnesses described the vehicle to a 911 dispatcher. Gbaraba, an exchange student from Nigeria, was charged with assault, reckless driving and fleeing from a police officer.
A not guilty plea was entered at Gbaraba's arraignment May 3. He's scheduled to return to court Wednesday to have a lawyer assigned.