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By David K. Li
A car driven by Syracuse University men’s basketball coach Jim Boeheim struck and killed a man on an interstate in central New York late Wednesday night, police said.
Jorge Jimenez, 51, was a passenger in a car that crashed into a guardrail on Interstate 690 near Thompson Road at about 11:22 p.m. on Wednesday, Syracuse police Sgt. Matthew Malinowski said.
Jimenez got out of the damaged car, which had bounced back into lanes of traffic, before Boeheim struck him while trying to avoid the vehicle, Malinowski said.
Jimenez was later pronounced dead at a local hospital.
Boeheim, who is 74 and lives in nearby Fayetteville, and the other car’s driver both remained on the scene and are cooperating with investigators, police said. Both drivers passed field sobriety tests, officials said.
So far, no one has been ticketed or charged with any crime, Malinowski said.
The investigation is ongoing and Malinowski asked for any witnesses to this crash to call police.
In a statement issued on Thursday morning, Boeheim said he and his wife, Juli, are mourning Jimenez’s death.
“I am heartbroken that a member of our community died as the result of last night’s accident,” Boeheim said. “Juli and I extend our deepest sympathies to the Jimenez family. Out of respect for those involved, I will not be providing further comment at this time.”
Hours before the deadly crash, Boeheim’s team defeated Louisville, 69-49, at the Carrier Dome. The team’s next game, Saturday against No. 1 Duke, is also at home.
“We are saddened by the death of a member of our Central New York community. On behalf of Chancellor Kent Syverud and the entire Syracuse University community, we extend our deepest condolences to all impacted by this tragic accident” Syracuse Athletic Director John Wildhack said in a statement.
“Coach Boeheim is in contact with local authorities and cooperating fully. Out of respect for those grieving, there will be no further comment at this time.”
Boeheim, who is in the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame, has been at Syracuse for 43 years and has a career record of 944-378. His 2003 team won the NCAA championship.