Robert Ogle, 16, and friend Alex Paul, 20, of Brooklyn, were hit at the intersection of Eliot Avenue and 80th Street at 1:30 a.m. Sunday morning as they walked home from a Middle Village party.
They were hit by 27-year-old Kenneth Guyear, a down-on-his-luck Middle Village man who while on a bender hopped into an idling car outside of Super Deli at 61-25 Woodhaven Boulevard and sped off.
Moments later he ran over Ogle and Paul. According to horrified witnesses, Guyear backed over their bodies several times as he tried to dislodge one of the boys from under the car. Ogle was pronounced dead at the scene, while Paul died a short time later at Elmhurst Hospital.
After the collision, Guyear drove back to the same deli where he initially stole the car. He was laughing as cops handcuffed him on the street about a block away from the deli. Guyear made a number of bizarre statements while being taken into custody, including stating that he had a drinking and pill problem, smoked pot, and did three bags of cocaine per day.
He also made threatening comments to the arresting officers.
“You guys don’t know what you’re doing,” he reportedly told police on the scene. “You have nothing on me. You’re just locking me up for DWI? I’m gonna’ have your job.”
Guyear also said that he was at a sweet sixteen party drinking vodka and got into a fight with his father before he stole the car. He said he saw Ogle and Paul crossing the street and slowed down.
“I drove and saw people,” Guyear said. “I slowed down and didn’t see them again.”
He also said that he didn’t think he hit anybody.
“I drove the car and saw the pedestrians, but I didn’t think I hit anybody,” Guyear said. “I kept driving and then stopped the car and looked for blood on the car.”
Guyear was charged with assault, vehicular manslaughter, grand larceny, leaving the scene of an accident, and driving while intoxicated. A judge also charged him with criminal mischief and making graffiti related to a separate incident, as well as for an outstanding warrant related to a Brooklyn felony DWI case.
He was ordered held without bail and is due back in court on February 17. He faces up to 25 years in prison if convicted on charges related to the hit-and-run case.
He also has an extensive arrest history, and did several stints on Rikers Island. Two of the arrests were for stealing cars.
Robert Ogle lived on 67th Avenue in a tidy brick home, where Sunday his devastated parents, Brendan and Mei Ogle, tried to cope with the loss of their son. Worried about their boy, they had actually called police an hour before the accident to report that their son had not returned home. Later that morning, detectives arrived at their house to deliver the sad news.
In an interview the following day, Brendan Ogle said Guyear deserves to be brought to justice.
“Our only hope is that the perpetrator can be held up as an example of the worst kind of people that are walking on the streets,” Ogle said. “I hope they put people like that away.” (With additional reporting by Daniel Bush)