Estelle Davis Brooklyn nurse run over by reversing construction backhoe in East New York. No arrests or charges made. A family grieves.
Street surveillance video has been released showing the moment a Brooklyn nurse was knocked over the head by a reversing construction backhoe before the unwitting driver continued to pull back, crushing the woman to death after falling to the ground.
Footage showed Estelle Davis, 61, walking through the intersection of New Lots and Van Sinderen Avenue in East New York just after 2pm on Friday as she was headed to her nursing job nearby.
Davis appears to have her head down and is looking at either a cell phone or some other object in her hand as she walks toward the sidewalk.
As she approaches the sidewalk, she is unaware that a large backhoe is being driven in reverse by the driver who likely did not see Davis.
The backhoe’s shovel rams into Davis’ head, knocking her backwards.
Why didn’t anyone notice?
In the surveillance footage, several objects are seen flying from her hands.
After she is knocked to the ground, the backhoe continues to pull out of the driveway and onto the intersection, as neither the driver nor a worker nearby appears to have noticed Davis falling over and disappearing under the vehicle.
The backhoe then drives off as the ‘crushed woman’ is seen moments later lying motionless in the middle of the intersection.
Cops arrived at the scene and found Davis unresponsive about 2.20pm.
According to the NYPD, officers responded to a 911 call about an unconscious person near New Lots Avenue and Van Sinderen Avenue at around 2:23pm on Friday.
First responders arrived at the scene and reported that a 61-year-old woman suffered trauma to her body.
The woman was rushed to Brookdale Hospital, where she was pronounced dead.
‘Heart of gold’
Davis was due at work at 3pm where she was scheduled to end her shift at 8pm.
‘Estelle – she has a heart of gold, always willing to help people,’ her husband, Cleveland Thomas Jr, 59, told the New York Daily News.
‘She was a pastor, she owns the title of school teacher and a nurse, so she’s extremely people oriented.
‘And she’s always willing to help others who are in need.’
Thomas added: ‘She would save the whole world if she could. She’s dedicated, she’s dedicated to people.’
He said he received a call from doctors at Brookdale just after 3pm on Friday asking him to rush down to the hospital.
Who bears culpability?
Thomas told the Daily News that the phone call left him feeling ‘disoriented’ and ‘filled with anxiety.’
He said that he walked to the hospital, which is 16 blocks away from their home. Thomas said he unwittingly walked by the scene of the accident.
‘I walked to keep my composure,’ he said.
‘I walked all the way to the hospital – that’s me. She and I are energetic like that.’
‘When I went to the hospital and saw her body, I just kissed her and kissed her and kissed her and cried,’ Thomas said.
Thomas and Davis first met in high school 48 years ago.
It remained unclear if any charges would be brought forward. The identity of the construction worker was not publicly revealed. Also not immediately unclear is why precautions were not made to box the area off as seemingly dangerous work was completed.