Police: Guy drove car into Gowanus Canal after alleged hit and run

Police: Guy drove car into Gowanus Canal after alleged hit and run
Photo by Jason Speakman

Now he needs a bath — and a lawyer.

A man drove his car into the fetid waters of the Gowanus Canal on Monday morning — allegedly in a desperate bid to flee the scene of a crash, in which he hit a woman and possibly an infant girl, police said.

The driver was heading down Court Street when he allegedly smashed his car into a Camry parked near Degraw Street at around 11:10 am, injuring a woman’s foot as she attempted to place the 1-year-old girl in the car, according to an officer at the scene who only identified himself as a police chief.

The motorist did not stick around and own up to the havoc, the officer claimed — instead, he took a sharp left on Degraw, put his foot to the floor, and fled — directly into Brooklyn’ Nautical Purgatory,

The 36-year-old man sent his car barreling through the guardrail that separates Degraw Street from the Canal, and his vehicle plunged up to its windows in the canal’s gonorrhea-corrupted waters, the officer said.

The motorist was lucky on a few counts, according to the chief, who said if it wasn’t for the railing and the fact that the Gowanus was at low tide, there might not have been anyone left to arrest.

“If it wasn’t for the guardrails, he probably would have went further and been completely submerged,” he said.

The 36-year-old man was able to pull himself out of the car through a window, and clamor up onto his vehicle’s roof, when a group of teamsters working on the television series “The Americans,” which was filming nearby, appeared to lend a hand and haul him out of the canal, according to a truck driver with the production.

The driver went on to say that the suspect was given a checkup inside an ambulance, before cops slapped him in cuffs and led him into a squad car.

It is unclear if the woman who was injured received medical care, but the police boss said the young girl was taken to Lutheran Hospital as a precautionary measure, even though, at a glance, the child didn’t appear to be suffering any injuries.

— with Jason Speakman

Reach reporter Colin Mixson at cmixson@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260-4505.