Junior Jonathan Lambert was involved in an accident with a police car on Chambers Street on Thursday, September 10 at roughly 3:45 p.m. Lambert was crossing the street to meet a friend when he was hit by the police car. He suffered a broken fibula and minor cuts and bruises.
According to an eye witness, senior Seth Schonberg, Lambert was sitting on the wall on the north side of Chambers Street and near the West Side highway, with senior David Tang, junior Rose Moser and Schonberg, when junior Ariel Eisenstadt, who was walking on the opposite side of Chambers Street, called out to him. Lambert attempted to cross the street and join his friend when he was hit by the police car.
“The light was good for him to cross, but he wasn’t crossing at the intersection,” Eisenstadt said. “So as he was crossing, a cop car rounds the turn on the West Side Highway and didn’t see [Lambert]. So they hit him.”
“He was running across the street, and going west the traffic was pretty heavy and going east there was no traffic at all,” Moser said. “The cop car turned and was going pretty fast. They didn’t see him because of the traffic and he didn’t see them for the same reason.”
Lambert was just past the division between the oncoming and outgoing traffic when he was hit by the police car. He attempted to jump over the car which caused the brunt of the impact to be on his lower legs, throwing him 10 feet into the air and spinning head-over-heels.
Lambert landed on his head and hands to the side of the police car and lost consciousness for a short time. Two policemen, who exited the car, told him not to move and called an ambulance.
“When I saw him get hit it was a horrible feeling. The worst part, though, was that people who didn’t know him stood around staring and laughing,” Moser said. “I was actually scared to cross the street if a car was coming for a few days after that.”
After the accident, a Fire Department of New York truck was the first to arrive on the scene. A fireman and the policemen gathered Lambert’s personal information from Schonberg and Moser until an ambulance came. Lambert was then fastened onto a backboard, placed into the ambulance and brought to Bellevue Hospital.
He was released from the hospital at about 9:30 p.m. that night and came to school the next day with crutches and a cast over his left leg.
“I don’t really remember what happened,” Lambert said. “What I do remember is I started to run. Then the next thing I know I’m on the ground. I feel fine now, though.”
Principal Stanley Teitel was informed of the incedent when “somebody walked into the office and said to me a student has been hit by a car,” he said. Teitel then went to the scene of the accident, where the police officers and firemen were already helping Lambert. “I did speak to his parent the next morning,” Teitel said. “His mom said he was okay. She told me he had a broken [fibula].”
The police officers involved and the First Precinct declined to comment.