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'Criminally Negligent' Westchester Driver Sent To Jail For Crashing BMW, Killing 23-Year-Old

Ramel Douglas. Photo Credit: Westchester County District Attorney's Office
Jyrel Malik Daniel Photo Credit: GoFundMe

A Westchester man is going to spend time behind bars for his role in a car crash that left a 23-year-old in a coma for months before he suffered a seizure and died from cardiac arrest.

Ramel Douglas, of Mount Vernon, has been remanded to Westchester County Jail pending his sentencing on Jan. 30, 2020, when he will be sentenced to time served of eight months followed by five years probation.

Douglas pleaded guilty in February last year to one count of criminally negligent homicide for his role in the death of Jyrel Daniel in June 2016.

Daniel had come home from college for the summer when he was in a car on June 21, 2016, with his friends that was struck by a driver in a BMW going 75 mph in a posted 25 mph zone. First responders had to utilize the Jaws of Life to remove Daniel from the vehicle, putting him in a coma for six months and leaving him with a traumatic brain injury.

The driver of the BMW, Douglas, was arrested when it was determined that he was speeding when he struck the other car. The indictment read that Douglas, “with criminal negligence,” caused the death of another person, according to Westchester County District Attorney Anthony Scarpino, Jr.

Following the crash, Daniel, a New Rochelle High School graduate, experienced brain swelling, constant seizures, muscle contracture and was left completely bedridden. Doctors gave him a 3 percent chance to survive the crash, and a portion of his skull was removed, leaving him with a titanium mesh to protect his brain. He died in March last year following a nearly two-year battle.

In the courtroom, Daniel’s mother, Muriel Daniel called the incident a “cruel nightmare.”

“I never imagined a life without my son,” she said in court. “You took a part of me. I wish you knew the pain of losing a child,” adding, “I hate you.”

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