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Hit-and-Run Driver Could Serve Less Than Two Years For Killing Bowery Pedestrian

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Robert Perry.
Robert Perry.

Two years ago, Robert Perry was struck and killed by a driver racing past the Bowery Mission at speeds in excess of 50 m.p.h. Yesterday that driver learned his fate. 25-year-old Danny Lin could end up serving less than two years in prison after being convicted on second degree manslaughter charges.

Perry, 57, died after being run over by Lin on Nov. 24, 2014, near Rivington Street. After initially hitting Perry, prosecutors said, “he continued barreling down the street… before eventually crashing into a hydrant on a congested sidewalk, narrowly missing several bystanders.”

During a sentencing hearing Monday, State Supreme Court Judge Thomas Farber told Lin, “Society cannot have this kind of lawless behavior go unpunished.” As a result of the sentence, Lin could spend up to five years in prison, or be freed after just one and 2/3 years.

A reporter from the Daily News attended yesterday’s hearing:

Assistant District Attorney David Drucker said that Lin’s devastating driving the day he fatally struck 57-year-old Robert Perry with his 2011 BMW 335i was “not at all an aberration.”… “Basically, driving fast is what the defendant does. It’s like a hobby of his,” Drucker said. Drucker also pointed to GoPro video footage from previous times that shows Lin “driving incredibly fast both on highways and more importantly on public streets.” Lin, who was convicted of second-degree manslaughter in July, was “very well aware of the potentially deadly nature of driving this fast,” the ADA added. Lin even sports a quote that has been attributed to the late Paul Walker, who died in a major car wreck. “If one day speed kills me do not cry because I was smiling,” the arm tattoo reads.

Bowery near Rivington Street, November 2014. Photo by a TLD reader.

The judge rejected pleas from Lin’s attorney for community service rather than prison time. The DA’s office had asked for a harsher jail term than the judge imposed. District Attorney Cy Vance released a statement saying:

Danny Lin’s reckless driving brought about the untimely death of Robert Perry and gravely endangered several others as he sped down the Bowery at more than twice the local speed limit. Thanks to my Office’s prosecutors and the NYPD’s Collision Investigation Squad, he will now serve a prison sentence for his deadly conduct. We will continue doing our part to reduce vehicular fatalities by holding criminal drivers accountable for the harm that they inflict.

Robert Perry frequently stayed at the Bowery Mission. He struggled with homelessness most of his life. Perry was a member of the mission’s photography club. He was interviewed shortly before the hit-and-run tragedy, telling the story of his difficult life.

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