Jersey City, NJ councilwoman in viral hit-and-run video pleads guilty
🚗 A Jersey City councilwoman has lost her license for a hit-and-run
🚲 Shocking video of the crash went viral, making national headlines
👩 Amy DeGise apologized but again refused to resign for leaving the scene
JERSEY CITY — The councilwoman who ran over a cyclist without stopping will have to give up her driver's license for a year and pay a $5,000 fine.
Jersey City Councilwoman Amy DeGise had the right of way when she went through the intersection of Forrest Street and Martin Luther King Drive on July 19, 2022. But she did not even tap her brakes before or after hitting cyclist Andrew Black as he rode through the intersection.
Security footage showed DeGise never stopped to check on Black. The video went viral, putting the local Democrat in the national spotlight.
DeGise appeared in Essex County court on Tuesday afternoon. She avoided jail time after pleading guilty to leaving the scene and failure to report an accident. But her plea agreement means her license will be suspended for one year and she must pay a $5,000 fine, the New Jersey Globe reported.
🤝 Jersey City's DeGise apologizes for hit-and-run
Following her plea deal, DeGise for the first time offered a public apology to Black for the hit-and-run. In a statement, she also apologized to the people of Jersey City for bringing "negative attention" to the community, adding that she accepts the legal consequences of her actions.
“Seven months ago I made a mistake that I will regret for the rest of my life," DeGise said. "I want to offer my heartfelt apology to Andrew Black and I am thankful that he was not hurt."
DeGise also said she will continue to serve as a member of City Council, bucking calls for her resignation.
"I will continue to do whatever I can to help my community as an elected member of the City Council, and I will be serving the remainder of my term," DeGise said.
In the days after the hit-and-run, two fellow members of Council, James Solomon and Frank Gilmore, called on DeGise to resign. Members of the public also called on DeGise to step down at a Council meeting in August.
READ MORE: DeGise finally breaks silence - will not resign over hit-and-run
Solomon told New Jersey 101.5 in a statement that he would defer to Black for whether justice was served and defer to the public on "whether her apology is sufficient."
"Today’s accountability and apology from Councilmember Amy DeGise were much needed and six-months delayed," Solomon said. "I was the first Councilmember to call for Councilmember DeGise's resignation, and I stand by that call."
New Jersey 101.5 has reached out to Gilmore for comment.
Rick Rickman is a reporter for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org
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