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Whitestone man cuffed in hit-and-run that injured 4-year-old boy in Flushing Meadows Corona Park

NYPD Transportation Chief Kim Royster announced a $10,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of a dirt bike rider who left a child for dead Sunday. A tip led to a Whitestone man's arrest on July 21. (Photo by Dean Moses)

A Whitestone man was arrested and charged Wednesday in the July 18 hit-and-run in Flushing Meadows Corona Park that left a 4-year-old boy in critical condition.

On July 21, detectives with the Regional Fugitive Task Force cuffed 29-year-old Argenis Rivas, who is being held prior to his arraignment Thursday on charges of felony assault, endangering the welfare of a child, and other crimes, according to Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz.

Rivas is a reputed member of the Trinitarios street gang, according to law enforcement sources. Investigators received a tip that led them to Rivas, according to the police source.

The Trinitarios are a notorious Hispanic gang founded by Dominicans in the Bronx in 1993, which became notorious when five of its members got life sentences in 2019 for hacking young Lesandro “Junior” Guzman-Feliz to death at a Bronx bodega.

Rivas had been living on Parsons Boulevard in Whitestone, according to authorities.

The NYPD had been searching for the illegal dirt bike rider since he struck Jonathan Beauchamp in the parking lot of the Meadow Lake Boathouse, where the child had spent the afternoon with his parents. The young boy stepped out from between two parked cars and was struck by the dirt bike at 5:47 p.m. on July 18. The rider fled the scene, leaving the young boy unconscious on the pavement, having suffered head trauma from the collision, according to the NYPD.

The youngster was rushed to Flushing Hospital before being transferred to Cohen’s Children’s Hospital, where he remains in critical but stable condition, police said Wednesday.

The arrest came less than 24 hours after NYPD Chief of Transportation Kim Royster announced that a $10,000 reward was being offered for information leading to the illegal dirt biker’s arrest and conviction.

Chief of NYPD Transportation Bureau Kim Royster and NYPD officials address the media regarding the hit-and-run. (Photo by Dean Moses)

“Protecting our children is a fundamental component of traffic safety, and today we are here asking the public’s help,” Chief Royster said. “No parent should have to endure such a senseless act. We will be working closely with the Queens district attorney’s office to arrest and prosecute this individual to the fullest extent of the law.”

Rivas, who lives near the Whitestone Expressway, faces additional charges including operating an unregistered motorcycle, operating a motor vehicle without insurance and being an unlicensed operator.

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