Brooklyn NY – A motorist with multiple sclerosis defied his doctor’s orders by getting behind the wheel — and fatally struck a father on the way to pick up his son from prekindergarten, authorities said.
Mark Antoine, 41, was told by his doctor not to drive because of his potentially disabling medical condition.
People with multiple sclerosis can suffer from partial or complete loss of vision as well as numbness or weakness in limbs, according to the Mayo Clinic.
They can also have double vision, slurred speech, dizziness and a lack of coordination.
In Antoine’s case, he lost control of a 2004 Nissan Pathfinder when his leg became locked on the gas pedal near Avenue A and Remsen Ave. in East Flatbush on Jan. 9, 2017, at 5:20 p.m., according to the Brooklyn district attorney’s office.
The speeding car rammed into six other vehicles before fatally hitting father Marlon Palacios at Avenue A and Linden Blvd.
Palacios was on the way to pick up his son from the Coconut Grove Childhood Education Center, according to a GoFundMe page set up by the school.
“Mr. Palacios was a wonderful and devoted dad,” the page says. “It was evident by his children’s reaction each day that he dropped and picked them up.”
The page had raised $700 of its $1,000 goal as of Sunday night.
Palacios is survived by a wife and two children, according to friends and family.
“No words can take away the pain ur feelin’ during this time,” wrote Latoya Gould, who donated $15. “Be strong for your boys.”
Antoine was indicted on manslaughter charges last Thursday. He was held on $50,000 bail after he pleaded not guilty.
“This was a preventable death that could have been avoided if the defendant had listened to his own doctor’s advice. Instead, he got behind the wheel and now an innocent father is dead,” Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez said in a statement.
A grand jury indicted him on charges of second-degree manslaughter, criminally negligent homicide, reckless driving and speeding.
If convicted of the most serious charge, Antoine faces up to 15 years in prison.