Accused Drunk Driver In New York Allegedly Kicked Navy Veteran Grandfather To Death Following Fender Bender
A New York man is being charged with murder after a late-night car crash escalated into a fatal street fight, according to authorities.
Around 11:00 p.m. on April 15, officers were dispatched to the scene of an accident on Long Island, the Nassau County Police Department said.
According to officials, 26-year-old Patrick Destine was driving a gray 2004 Infiniti G35 when he collided with 54-year-old David McKenzie, who was driving a green 2003 Honda minivan. Police said both drivers got out of their vehicles and a verbal argument ensued.
NCPD Detective Captain Stephen Fitzpatrick said Destine was driving without headlights and had been drinking when he ran a stop sign, causing the crash, Newsday reported. Destine had just purchased the vehicle, as it was unregistered, uninsured and lacked a valid inspection.
Fitzpatrick claims Destine got out of his car, chased down the victim and then pushed him onto the ground before stomping on him and kicking him in the head and face, according to Newsday.
Officers arrived on the scene and discovered McKenzie, who was just feet away from his family home, was laying on the ground with severe face and head injuries.
The victim was rushed to a nearby hospital where he succumbed to his injuries just after midnight, officials said.
Authorities said Destine rummaged through McKenzie’s minivan after beating him up and stole several personal items. Destine was arrested “after a short foot pursuit,” police said.
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A relative of McKenzie talked to Newsday, saying there was a foot chase and “it was caught on the camera – where we saw two people chasing him and he was running home and was killed directly next door to our house.”
The second person seen on the doorbell camera footage is allegedly Destine’s girlfriend, Aisha Pitt, 19. Police said Pitt was arrested that same night for fleeing the scene of the crime and she had some of the victim’s credit cards in her possession.
McKenzie’s family talked with WCBS-TV and said “the family is just grieving.” They added McKenzie was a “kind hearted and loving father” of two, a grandfather and a four-year veteran of the U.S. Navy.
Destine was charged with driving while intoxicated and second-degree murder, officials said. He pleaded not guilty at his arraignment and is being held without bond.
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