STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — The father of Alize Jorge, the teen who was killed when the vehicle she was riding in crashed into a pole on Richmond Avenue in New Springville late Sunday night, said he’ll “forgive” and “pray” for the driver.
“I’ll be able to forgive that individual,” said Alvaro Jorge, 63. “And I’m also going to pray for him and his family — so that things work out the best that they can.”
The driver, Hasim Smith, 22, of Eltingville, has been charged with leaving the scene of a fatal accident, police said. Officials believe he was heading northbound on Richmond Avenue at a high rate of speed when he lost control of the vehicle while attempting to beat a red light at the intersection of Richmond and Richmond Hill Road around 10:45 p.m.
Smith swerved to avoid a car that was making a left turn onto Richmond Hill Road from the opposite direction with the green turn arrow and slammed into a traffic control post in the middle of the intersection, cops said.
Smith was already facing charges of leaving the scene of a crash in two other incidents in which pedestrians were injured within the past 13 months, police confirmed.
Alize Jorge was a graduate of the Michael J. Petrides School and set to begin her second year at Borough of Manhattan Community College with a major in accounting. She lived with her father and mother at the Parkview Apartments building at 700 Victory Blvd. in Silver Lake.
“My daughter was such a social girl,” said the father. “She attracted everybody — and I was always the papa bear protecting the cub.”
Jorge, a retired Department of Corrections officer, says he will strive to remain optimistic throughout this tragic experience.
“I want everyone to treasure [Alize’s] life,” he said. “I’m not going to be bitter or hold any vengeance over the person who was driving.
“I’m sure his intention was not to kill her.”
A second passenger, Porsha Richardson, 18, was ejected from the vehicle and found unconscious on the pavement, while Jorge, 19, was found unconscious and unresponsive in the rear of the vehicle, police said.
Both women were taken to Staten Island University Hospital, Ocean Breeze. Jorge was pronounced dead shortly after 11:30 p.m., according to police.
Richardson, Alize Jorge’s long-time friend, remains in the hospital’s Intensive Care Unit in critical condition.
Alvaro Jorge said that Richardson was responsive and speaking upon his visit early Monday morning.