Family Sues Mets In Hit-Run Death
The family of a Staten Island grandmother killed in an April 5 hit-and-run last week filed a lawsuit in Manhattan Supreme Court that names the Mets, driver Brian McGurk, his friend, bar-owner Robert Kelly, Citi Field vendors and the owners of a Staten Island tavern as allegedly responsible for the woman’s death.
The lawsuit charges that Brian McGurk went on a drinking binge in the hours before he slammed his speeding Ford Escape SUV into Clara Almazo, 58, as she attempted to cross Cary Avenue in Staten Island.
Almazo pushed her eight-year-old grandson, Brian Ramirez, to safety before the impact tossed her 150 feet, to her death.
McGurk, 40, left the scene after slamming into Almazo and waited nearly five hours before turning himself in at Staten Island’s 120th Precinct. McGurk’s police officer brother accompanied him to the precinct, where he refused to take a Breathalyzer test, authorities said. He was charged only with leaving the scene of the crash.
The lawsuit alleges that McGurk spent the afternoon on April 5 drinking with friends in a luxury box at Citi Field.
When the group returned to Staten Island on a tour bus, McGurk headed to the Castleton Avenue bar where he continued to drink, the lawsuit states. He left the bar at 9:50 p.m. and got behind the wheel of the SUV that crashed into Almazo.
Law enforcement sources said the Almazo family believes McGurk had been drinking all day—and that was the reason he fled the scene.
Vendors at Citi Field, “unlawfully, recklessly and negligently served and continued to serve (McGurk)…when they knew, or should have known, that he was or was becoming intoxicated”, the lawsuit alleges.
An NYPD spokesperson said cops at the 120th Precinct had no probable cause to charge McGurk with DWI, since he did not show signs of intoxication when he surrendered.
The Mets and Citi Field vendor operator Aramark refused to comment on the ongoing litigation.