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Kiani Phoenix: NYC driver who killed disabled man BLAMES COPS and says she was aiming for ex-lover’s sister

According to her lawyer, Phoenix has already filed 10 domestic complaints against her ex, who was arrested on Tuesday
The Honda mowed down 59-year-old Milton Storch, who was sitting on a walker (NYC police Department)
The Honda mowed down 59-year-old Milton Storch, who was sitting on a walker (NYC police Department)

This article contains graphic content that could be traumatic for some readers. Discretion is advised.

FAR ROCKAWAY, QUEENS: An NYC woman accused of fatally mowing down a disabled man while speeding down the sidewalk was aiming for the younger sister of her abusive ex-boyfriend, her attorney claimed on Wednesday, August 31.

Alleged hit-and-runner Kiani Phoenix, 26, was a victim of domestic violence, her attorney Melvin Kornberg told the Daily News. Her ex-lover used to beat her and gave her mental trauma. The violence she suffered made her spend 18 months in a mental institution. "The cause of this whole situation starts with the assault on her," the lawyer told the paper. "She in no way intended to kill this man."


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"Had they made the arrest months ago, none of this would have ever happened," Kornberg said. 'That's the catalyst with the fight – the fact she has these complaints against the brother.' The incident happened when Phoenix jumped in her Honda and mowed down 59-year-old Milton Storch who was sitting on a walker outside the Rohan deli on Beach 20th Street near New Haven Avenue. “She’s extremely, extremely sorry for what happened,” Kornberg said.

Phoenix turned herself in on Monday, August 29, and faces charges of second-degree murder, attempted murder in the second degree, leaving the scene of an accident, and other charges. However, her attorney revealed that Phoenix has already filed 10 domestic complaints against her ex, who was arrested by officials on Tuesday and charged with endangering the welfare of a minor and assault on a 42-year-old woman that Kornberg said was Phoenix's mother.


Kornberg said the death of innocent Storch could have been prevented if Police had taken strict action against her ex and had arrested him earlier. “Could she have helped what happened? Absolutely not,” he said about his client. “It’s an accident that didn’t have to happen if an arrest had been previously made by police.”

Phoenix and her ex’s sister had a verbal spat on Saturday morning. The whole incident was captured on the surveillance camera of the Queens bodega where it started. In the footage, two women can be seen throwing punches at each other while brutally pulling each other’s hair. While landing punches on the other woman, Phoenix tried to make her way out and open her Honda’s gates. Once she settled in her car, she made the woman her target but accidentally killed Storch who was trying to make his way out of the sidewalk.

Trying to flee the scene, Phoenix then backed up, pulled back into the road, paused at a stop sign, and slowly drove away. However, the good samaritans present on the sidewalk called paramedics to help Storch. He was immediately rushed to St John's Hospital where he was pronounced dead. Storch, who lived nearby, often hung out in the area and suffered from limited mobility due to a build-up of fat in his legs, his roommate Jose Rodriguez told the Daily News. He had to use the walker to get around. Phoenix is due back in court on September 21.