A Middle Island man was arraigned Tuesday on charges of leaving the scene after, prosecutors said, he ran a red light just before striking and injuring a 3-year-old girl in a stroller on the William Floyd Parkway.
Police said Scott Shea, 30, was driving a 2005 Jeep north on the parkway, near Mastic Boulevard, when he struck the child, who was being pushed by her mother, at 3:45 p.m. Monday.
The girl, who was not identified, was airlifted to Stony Brook University Hospital. Assistant District Attorney William Nash said in court Tuesday that the toddler was in stable condition and was being treated for a broken arm and lacerations to her arm and face.
The mother, whose identity also was not released, was not injured. She had another child in her arms and was able to jump out of the way of the SUV, police said.
Before his arraignment with Suffolk District Court Judge G. Ann Spellman, Shea told reporters he hit the toddler "by accident," News 12 reported.
Spellman remanded him on bail of $7,500 cash or $15,000 bond on the charge of leaving the scene of an accident.
Shea's attorney, Vincent J. Trimarco, Jr., denied the charges in court.
Witnesses said Shea ran the light and swerved to avoid a 2011 Honda going west on Mastic Boulevard and turning south onto the parkway, according to Nash and court records.
In court, Nash said Shea clipped the vehicle, then jumped the median and struck the stroller. Nash said Shea then continued north and turned into a nearby parking lot. Police found him there on the phone with his girlfriend. Shea had "made no effort to return to the scene," Nash said.
The Honda driver said in court records that she had pulled into the same parking lot and Shea told her: "I'm sorry, someone cut me off."
Trimarco said his client didn't leave the scene, but pulled into a parking lot adjacent to the scene where the child was hit. "What we have here . . . is an accident, a tragic accident, but an accident nonetheless," he said. He said the child and the stroller were on the median in the middle of the intersection, waiting to cross, when they were struck.
Nash said in court one witness told police Shea had his head down, "looking at something," as he drove into the intersection. Trimarco said the suggestion that his client was looking at something was "highly speculative."
Nash said Shea is on parole, after being released last year from prison on a conviction stemming from a criminal sale of a weapon.
Shea also was arraigned on a petty larceny charge from an Aug. 29 theft of lighting from a Commack residence. Bail for that charge was set at $1,000 cash, $3,000 bond.
With Gary Dymski