Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., today announced the indictment of Kenrick Cowan, 23, for the July 2021 hit-and-run death of 24-year-old delivery worker Borkot Ullah. Cowan is charged in a New York State Supreme Court indictment with Manslaughter in the Second Degree, Assault in the Second Degree, and Leaving the Scene of an Incident Resulting in Death Without Reporting, among other charges, for fatally hitting Mr. Ullah, who was riding his bicycle, while Cowan was fleeing from police officers on the Lower East Side.*
“Today we remember Borkot Ullah, a young immigrant and workers’ rights advocate who worked tirelessly to support his family here in New York City and in Bangladesh,” said District Attorney Vance. “Food delivery workers have one of the most dangerous jobs in the City thanks to reckless drivers, who tear through our streets. We are committed to ensuring accountability for drivers that kill or injure cyclists and pedestrians, which is why my Office empaneled a New York State grand jury and drafted the Vehicular Violence Accountability Act based on their recommendations, and why we strongly supported the Reckless Driver Accountability Act and speed safety camera program.”
As alleged in court documents, at approximately 10:00 p.m. on Thursday, July 08, 2021, NYPD officers attempted to pull COWAN over for speeding and committing other traffic violations as he drove his Subaru Outback eastbound on East Houston Street on the Lower East Side. Cowan led the police officers on a high-speed chase, weaved through traffic, and drove through a red light at the corner of East Houston and Clinton Streets, where he struck Mr. Ullah – who was riding his bicycle north on Clinton Street – and then fled the scene. Mr. Ullah was knocked several feet into the air during the collision and was shortly thereafter declared dead at Bellevue Hospital. Cowan was arrested last month by the NYPD’s Bronx Warrants Squad for an unrelated shooting in the Bronx, and was later charged with killing Mr. Ullah.
Assistant D.A. Kristen Baraiola is handling the prosecution of the case with the assistance of Assistant D.A. Roy Chon, under the supervision of Assistant D.A. Jill Hoexter (Chief of the Vehicular Crimes Unit) and Executive Assistant D.A. Joan Illuzzi-Orbon (Chief of the Trial Division). Paralegal Rachael Totz provided assistance with the case.
District Attorney Vance thanked the NYPD’s 5th Precinct and Collision Investigation Squad, in particular Detective Randall McFarland.
Kentick Cowanaddress withheld
- Manslaughter in the Second Degree, a class C felony, one count;
- Assault in the Second Degree, a class D felony, one count;
- Leaving the Scene of an Incident Resulting in Death Without Reporting, a class D felony, one count;
- Reckless Endangerment in the Second Degree, a class A misdemeanor, one count;
- Aggravated Unlicensed Operation of a Motor Vehicle in the Third Degree, an unclassified misdemeanor, one count;
- Reckless Driving, an unclassified misdemeanor, one count.
* The charges contained in the indictment are merely allegations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty. All factual recitations are derived from documents filed in court, including the complaint and indictment, and statements made on the record in court.