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Five young men are killed in ‘catastrophic’ crash that split car in half

A speeding car fleeing from a traffic stop smashed into another vehicle in suburban New York, splitting one of them in half and killing five men overnight, four of them teenagers.

The driver of one of the cars was killed in what officials have described as a ‘catastrophic’ crash on Tuesday in Yonkers, along with four boys, all age 18, in the other vehicle. Friends described the youths as recent high school graduates, according to WNBC.

The deadly collision took place at 9.23pm on Riverdale Avenue near Culver Street in the Ludlow Park neighborhood. Chunks of debris and twisted car parts from the wreckage were strewn across three blocks.

Surveillance video from a gas station on Riverdale Avenue in Yonkers shows a white Infiniti (circled in red) speeding on Tuesday night 

A Nissan carrying four 18-year-old men was making a turned onto the street when the Infiniti (circled in red) T-boned it

A Nissan carrying four 18-year-old men was making a turned onto the street when the Infiniti (circled in red) T-boned it 

This image shows the moment of impact, which caused the Nissan to split in half

This image shows the moment of impact, which caused the Nissan to split in half 

Riverdale Avenue was closed for more than eight hours as authorities worked to piece together what had happened.

Gas station security video showed a white Infiniti sedan with only the driver inside speeding before it barreled into the vehicle occupied by the four teens.

On Wednesday, police identified the driver of the infiniti as 36-year-old Devon Haywood, of Mount Vernon. The occupants of the other car were identified as Brandon Sierra; Randy Brisbane; Tamari Watkins, and Anthony Cruz, all 18 from Yonkers. 

Shortly before the collision, police observed Haywood operating his white 2009 Inifniti ‘in an erratic manner with equipment violations’ and made at attempt to pull him over.

Haywood appeared to stop in front of 47-85 Riverdale Avenue, but then accelerated at a high rate of speed southbound.

Officers followed the Inifiniti, but a Yonkers police spokesperson stressed to DailyMail.com that they were not chasing Haywood because they ‘intuitively know not to engage in high-speed pursuits.’  

The crash caused all four occupants of the Nissan to be ejected onto the roadway; they were pronounced dead at the scene

The crash caused all four occupants of the Nissan to be ejected onto the roadway; they were pronounced dead at the scene 

The front half of the Nissan that was occupied by the four recent high school graduates is seen resting in the road following the deadly crash

The front half of the Nissan that was occupied by the four recent high school graduates is seen resting in the road following the deadly crash 

Police were following the white Infiniti after its drier failed to pull over for a traffic stop just minutes before the collision

Police were following the white Infiniti after its drier failed to pull over for a traffic stop just minutes before the collision 

Police spent eight works gathering evidence at the scene, which covered three blocks

Police spent eight works gathering evidence at the scene, which covered three blocks 

The Infiniti continued to accelerate ‘beyond reckless speeds’ as it approached the intersection at Culver Street, when a silver 2006 Nissan sedan occupied by the four teenagers was making a right turn south onto Riverdale Avenue. 

As the Nissan entered the intersection, the Infiniti crashed into it, resulting in what police described as ‘catastrophic damage’ to both vehicles; the force of the impact split the Nissan in half. All four occupants were ejected onto the roadway and were pronounced dead at the scene.

The driver of the Infiniti had to be extricated from his mangled car using ‘Jaws of Life.’ He was transported to Jacobi Hospital, where he later died.

The first officer arrived on the scene 15 seconds after the crash.  

Maria Delgado, who lives in the area, told WABC-TV she heard a loud noise and a man running and saying, ‘Oh my God, oh my God!’

She said she went outside and saw bodies and one of the cars split in half.  

The driver of the Infinit had to be extricated from his vehicle with 'Jaws of Life.' He died at the hospital

The driver of the Infinit had to be extricated from his vehicle with ‘Jaws of Life.’ He died at the hospital 

Police say they are investigating why the driver of this vehicle fled from officers

Police say they are investigating why the driver of this vehicle fled from officers  

‘Last night’s car accident on Riverdale Avenue was nothing short of tragic,’ Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano stated. ‘Four young lives were cut short by the recklessness of one individual. Let this be a lesson to all who drive at excessive speeds – it not only puts your life at risk but also the innocent lives with whom you share the road. My deepest condolences and prayers go to the families of those lost, especially during this holiday season.’

The Yonkers police spokesperson said there is no word at this time whether alcohol or drugs played a role in the collision. It is also unknown how fast Haywood was going when he crashed into the Nissan. 

The crash is now the subject of multiple investigations, with police trying to determine what motivated Haywood to flee from the traffic stop in the first place.    


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