Limo firm operator faces homicide count
The operator of Prestige Limousine was arrested Wednesday and charged with one count of criminally negligent homicide, days after one of the company’s limousines crashed into a parked SUV in a store parking lot, killing 20 people in Upstate New York, authorities said.
New York State Police said Nauman Hussain, 28, was arrested after a traffic stop on Interstate 787. Hussain is the son of the company’s owner, Shahed Hussain, and was running the company’s day-today operations, authorities said.
At a news conference Wednesday, New York State Police Superintendent George P. Beach said Nauman Hussain had previously been served written violations by state police and the state Transportation Department that the limo driver, Scott T. Lisinicchia, 53, was not licensed to operate the vehicle. Further, he knew about the state inspection in September that resulted in the vehicle being ordered out of service, Beach said.
Attorney Lee Kindlon said that his client was “not guilty” and that police “jumped the gun” on bringing charges, according to USA Today.
After the crash Saturday in Schoharie, about 25 miles west of Albany, that killed two pedestrians and 18 people in the stretch limo, including the driver, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo (D) highlighted Prestige’s spotty safety record and said the company’s owner had “a lot of questions to answer.” The company’s three vehicles had failed multiple state and federal compliance inspections, and the vehicle involved in the crash had failed a state inspection a month before, officials said.
A polar bear holds a pumpkin at the Detroit Zoo in Royal Oak, Mich., during the zoo’s annual Smashing Pumpkins event on Wednesday. Each October, some of the animals receive treat-filled pumpkins hidden throughout their habitats or prepared and placed in a manner to stimulate natural behaviors.