In response to the release of CCTV video of the collision between Jersey City Councilwoman Amy DeGise and a cyclist, occurring at Forrest Street and Martin Luther King Jr. Drive at 8 am, Tuesday, July 19, Jersey City advocacy nonprofits SafeStreetsJC and Bike JC make the following statement:
We reiterate that no matter the circumstances or outcomes, all hit-and-runs deserve the utmost condemnation. It is never acceptable to leave the scene of a crash. It is not only criminal—it reduces the chance someone injured gets timely, possibly life-saving aid.
On Tuesday, July 26, a video recording the hit-and-run incident was released. The video shows a cyclist crossing Forrest Street on MLK southbound. Councilwoman DeGise’s vehicle is shown driving through the intersection eastbound, colliding with the cyclist with enough force to send him flying over the hood of DeGise’s vehicle and hard onto the pavement. The video evidence is clear and irrefutable: DeGise made no effort to slow down, stop, or check on the cyclist. Many neighbors in the immediate aftermath rushed to the cyclist’s aid.
Cyclists, like all other road users, are expected to exercise caution and obey the rules of the road. This does not change or excuse Councilwoman DeGise’s illegal and dangerous behavior. Fleeing the scene after a crash is a crime. No one is above the law.
In the video, Councilwoman DeGise demonstrated poor judgment, a disregard for the law, reckless operation of a motor vehicle, and a lack of concern for the harm she may have caused. As a councilperson, she wields the power to create laws that all citizens must follow. Much of the business before City Council is improving how we travel and the safety of the city’s road network. The prestige and trust we give to our electeds to make our laws and look after our well-being has been irreparably harmed.
Given this criminal behavior and blatant disregard for the health and well-being of her constituents as well as the damage to the credibility of her office, we believe Councilwoman DeGise has demonstrated herself unfit for the office she serves. We urge her to resign immediately.
Bike JC Board of Trustees
SafeStreetsJC Board of Trustees