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Victim hit by driver high on meth gives moving testimony

New York Post, June 20, 2016

A Citi bicyclist struck by a drug-crazed driver in 2013 in the East Village testified Monday that he thought he was going to die.

“I remember seeing a tree flying,” said Jonathan Wells, 40 at the Manhattan murder trial of Shaun Martin. “I was struck by something really hard. I got slammed to the ground, and I remember seeing the front of the car and it was on fire.”

He continued soberly, “I remember thinking I was going to die.” Wells, who sustained a broken leg in the collision, made a full recovery.

Martin, 35, was barreling down Second Avenue at 80 mph on June, 19, 2013 when he struck four bystanders, a 25-foot tree, a muni meter, a fire hydrant and finally East Village Farm and grocery at the corner of Eat Fourth Street.

Deli worker Mohammed Akkas Ali, 63, eventually died from his injuries. Ali’s son Rukanul Islam, 24, testified about the last six months of his father’s life.

“It was hard to see, he had oxygen and a breathing tube in the center of his neck,” Islam said through a Bengali interpreter. “His lips would move but nothing could be heard.”

Prosecutor Harrison Schweiloch also played taped conversations between Martin and his parents from Rikers shortly after his arrest.

“Maybe you could try and contact the people that I ran over and tell them I’m sorry, and I was getting chased and I didn’t mean it,” Martin blubbered over the phone as he begged his mom to bail him out. “If I get home and apologize soon enough, these people won’t have a chance to press charges.”

His doting mom replied, “Shaun, they’re Pakistani people, they don’t believe in, um,…they don’t believe in hurting others, they don’t believe in getting even.”

Earlier, Shaun told his mom, “I remember seeing the guy’s bleeding face, the Pakistani. I didn’t mean to do it.”

Martin was high on PCP and meth at the time of the accident, according to a toxicology report.

He faces murder, aggravated vehicular homicide, assault and other charges.

The nonjury trial before Justice Melissa Jackson continues Tuesday.