Cops: Driver who hit and killed kids in Slope found dead

Found dead: Dorothy Bruns, accused of killing two children in a car accident, was found dead in an apparent suicide
Brooklyn Paper
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook

Don’t miss our updates:

The driver who fatally hit two kids in a March Park Slope collision was found dead at her home on Tuesday, police said.

A friend discovered Dorothy Bruns, 44, who killed 4-year-old Abigail Blumenstein and 1-year-old Joshua Lew — and injured three others including Blumenstein’s then-pregnant mother, Tony Award–winning actress Ruthie Ann Miles, who subsequently lost her unborn baby due to her injuries — at her Staten Island home near a bottle of pills and a suicide note, according to a New York Post.

Cops sent her body to the medical examiner, who will determine a cause of death, police said.

In May, prosecutors charged Bruns, who suffered from multiple sclerosis and had a history of seizures, with reckless manslaughter, claiming she ignored doctors’ orders when she got behind the wheel of her car on March 5 and blew through a red light at Fifth Avenue and Ninth Street, fatally striking the children after allegedly suffering an epileptic fit while driving.

Bruns faced up to 15 years if convicted of reckless manslaughter, and spent several months on Rikers Island following her indictment, until she scrounged up enough dough to make bail in September.

She last appeared before Kings County Supreme Court Justice Danny Chun at an October pre-trial hearing, after which she refused to answer this reporter’s questions about her case.

Bruns’s death did not have anything to do with any setbacks in her legal battle, according to her attorney David Jacobs, who called the incident and the circumstances surrounding it “a tragedy all around.”

If anyone you know exhibits signs of suicide, call New York City’s free, confidential Samaritans Suicide Prevention Center hotline at (212) 673–3000.

Reach reporter Colin Mixson at or by calling (718) 260-4505.
Updated 2:34 pm, November 7, 2018
Today’s news:
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook

Don’t miss our updates:

Reasonable discourse

Mike from Williamsburg says:
If DOT had designed streets that forced safe driving, 3 more people would be alive.
Nov. 7, 2018, 8:23 am
Charles from Bklyn says:
Let us not be unkind. This person was obviously regretful of her actions, and life is precious, even when you make mistakes. We all have made them; only some pay more than others for those mistakes. A cautionary tale that if you shouldnt drive, dont drive and endanger others.
Nov. 7, 2018, 8:49 am
Mary Ann from Gowanus says:
There's no evidence that Bruns regretted her actions. She didn't plead guilty. She didn't try to help at the scene. She had many, many moving violations, and had hit a pedestrian 6 months before the fatal accident. She had been told not to drive by a doctor and she drove anyway, knowing she was accident-prone. Hard as it is for you and me to understand, there are people who simply cannot feel empathy for others. She probably killed herself because she was facing a trial and a harsh penalty for the homicides she committed. I doubt remorse had anything to do with it.
Nov. 7, 2018, 9:57 am
Mary Ann from Gowanus says:
Mike from Williamsburg, the freshly redesigned intersection at 5 Av and 9 St is STILL a magnet for accidents. You do know that this accident happened when Bruns, stopped at a red light, suddenly gunned her way through it and into the intersection? How would a redesigned street have stopped someone who runs a red light or jumps a green light?
Nov. 7, 2018, 9:59 am
Mustache Pete from Windsor Terrace says:
Mary Ann from Gowanus: You may be entirely right that Bruns was a remorseless sociopath lacking empathy. But they usually don't kill themselves, even when caught. Another possibility is that some element in her complicated makeup made Bruns feel suicide was the only decent thing to do to atone for the enormity of her crimes. Neither you or I will ever know for sure.
Nov. 7, 2018, 10:26 am
It was an accident from NYC says:
Just an unfortunate accident is all. What's more unfortunate is how cruel and hateful people become when someone makes a mistake. Just think and realize it may be you or yours one day that makes a tragic mistake!
Nov. 7, 2018, 10:49 am
Jim from Cobble Hill says:
An "unfortunate accident" or a "tragic mistake" doesn't end up with dead children from the impact of a car that was stopped at a red light, giving the reasonable impression of pedestrian safety, and then which accelerated with deadly force. That is called criminal negligence and child-murder.
Nov. 7, 2018, 11:39 am
Frank from Kensington says:
I feel bad all the way around look at all these people who lost there lives. She killed herself because she realized She could not face the time for her actions. She never believed that she would kill someone. So many people talk bad but this is bad on all sides. I pray for all of them. May she rest in peace.
Nov. 7, 2018, 1:24 pm
concerned from Greenwood says:
Shame on the people above who are applauding someone's suicide. Bad karma.
Nov. 7, 2018, 5:50 pm
Bernie from Bellevue says:
Disgusting horrific comments by the people that are supposedly interested in safe streets but just want them to themselves. This is what your gentrifying neighbors think about you, folks.
Nov. 7, 2018, 6:53 pm
VZ from BK says:
Good riddance!
Nov. 7, 2018, 7:28 pm
Too Little from Too Late says:
Good! Too bad she didn’t do this before she killed pedestrians.
Nov. 7, 2018, 7:28 pm
Bernie from Bellevue says:
I'm a widdle snowfwake and my feefees are hurted :(
Nov. 7, 2018, 7:29 pm
You're not fooling anyone from Brooklyn says:
It's quite obvious that "Bernie from Bellevue", "Barry from Kenya", and "Hillary from Prison" are all from the same poster formerly known as "Henry Ford from Bay Ridge". Dude, you really need a hobby and to get outside more. Interact with others sharing your same interests. Try a Klan meeting or two.
Nov. 7, 2018, 7:57 pm
Mary Ann from Gowanus says:
Mustache Pete: It's being reported that Bruns' suicide note, in part, read, "I can't do this any more." She had several illnesses and was on a number of medications. It's interesting that the note didn't read, "I can't live with myself" or "I can never atone for the recklessness that killed 2 little children and 1 unborn baby at term." Again, we can't read her mind but all of her actions and words speak to a self-pitying narcissist (not a sociopath, as you suggested).
Nov. 8, 2018, 10:22 am
Mary Ann from Gowanus says:
"You're not fooling anyone from Brooklyn," I doubt even the Klan wants someone who equates the killing of 3 children and the maiming of 2 adults with "hurted feefees."
Nov. 8, 2018, 10:23 am
Raul says:
What a sad story. My condolences to all the families involved.
Nov. 8, 2018, 3:50 pm
DMC from Anywhere USA says:
This is definitely a tragedy all around. 3 children gone (I lost my oldest son and the pain is indescribable). My heart goes out to Ruthie Ann Miles. She will never be the same. And yes, Dorothy Bruns should not have been driving. Imagine how it would feel if you had MS and Epilepsy. She was wrong and obviously, could not live with the pain of what she had done. Colin Mixson, let's not make this even worse by calling the seizure she had an "epileptic fit". This is 2018, that term is archaic and should not ever be used. Yes, I lost my brother last year that had epilepsy and he suffered greatly. Institutions he lived in for short periods of time used that term. We have evolved to realize epilepsy is a disease and no one's fault. I thank you in advance for listening to me in regard to the horrible term used as a description of a person with no power over seizures and when they arrive.
Nov. 8, 2018, 10:49 pm
Pete from Small Town Iowa says:
"Eye for an eye." Yes, she knew that she wasn't suppose to drive, but did anyway. Hope she rots in hell. Idiot, just like Hillary Clinton-"I can do anything, I'm a woman." You think because they have a vagina, that a woman can "STILL ——ING DRIVE WITH THE POSSIBILITY OF HAVING A SEIZURE." Christ in a ——ing cartoon! Too bad she didn't sit in jail and be forced to think about how much pain and suffering she caused many people. Maybe she did all of us a favor by killing herself, she saved the taxpayers $50,000 a year. TOO BAD SHE JUST DIDN'T HAVE ENOUGH GUTS TO DO IT THE DAY SHE KILLED THOSE INNOCENT KIDS AND CHILD-TO-BE.
Nov. 9, 2018, 12:56 am
Clare from Sheepshead Bay says:
Aside from a warning, shouldn't the Dr. informed Motor Vehicle?
Nov. 9, 2018, 9:49 am
Pete from Small Town Iowa says:
To Clare from Sheepshead Bay, Due to the HIPPA ACT, doctors can lose their ability to practice medicine if they informed the Motor Vehicle Department concerning a patient who has seizures. Yes, isn't this country great, fire a doctor who is protecting the public from a potentially dangerous driver who might,( And is this case did), kill innocent bystanders while suffering a seizure behind the wheel. In this case it wouldn't have mattered if he told the DMV, the self-entitled idiot drove and that had major consequences. She finally did the right thing, now the families she scarred for ever, can try and get back to some sort of normalcy in their completely shattered lives. To those families that are affected by this moron driving, my heart goes out to you. I know we can't bring back those you lost, but do what you can to go on:)
Nov. 9, 2018, 1:53 pm
Pina109 from Bay Ridge says:
Mary Ann from Gowanus You are quite the judgeful one! Dorothy was only 44 yo And was dealt with a ——tty healthbcard I would only ask you to walk a mile in Her shoes before making such harch comments You have NO idea the amount of pain she was carrying Inside. So please, try to refrain from using your hateful words And remember that she didn't start off her day with the intent Of killing 3 kids. If you can, try to find humanity inside of you And know that she was suffering as well.
Nov. 18, 2018, 9:24 pm
Pina109 from Bay Ridge says:
Pete from Small Town Iowa You are as very HATEFUL man I Dont know why But the HATE just spews from you Did someone put you in charge ? Are you taking over God's position? It really sounds like that And you condone the fact that a 44 yo With medical problems that you'll never know How they effected her Plus dealing with the guilt of killing 3 kids Unintentionally And yet you applaud her decision to kill herself There's a special place in HELL for you Pete Even God Almighty forgives Apparently you don't YOU JUST HATE 😡
Nov. 18, 2018, 9:35 pm

Comments closed.

First name
Last name
Your neighborhood
Email address
Daytime phone

Your letter must be signed and include all of the information requested above. (Only your name and neighborhood are published with the letter.) Letters should be as brief as possible; while they may discuss any topic of interest to our readers, priority will be given to letters that relate to stories covered by The Brooklyn Paper.

Letters will be edited at the sole discretion of the editor, may be published in whole or part in any media, and upon publication become the property of The Brooklyn Paper. The earlier in the week you send your letter, the better.

Keep it local!

Stay in touch with your community. Subscribe to our free newsletter: