Farmingdale Man Struck, Killed on Conklin St.; Driver Charged with DWI

Farmingdale driver stands accused in early morning crash Thursday.

A Farmingdale man skateboarding on Conklin Street was struck and killed Thursday morning by a man police say was drunk.

Nassau Homicide detectives said Michael Gradzki, 28 of Farmingdale, was crossing Clinton Street at Conklin on his skateboard from east to west when he was struck by an eastbound 2009 Infiniti about 12:20 a.m. Thursday.

The victim was transported to an area hospital where he was pronounced dead by hospital personnel at 2:20 a.m.

During the investigation, police determined the driver of the Infiniti, Kenneth Chan, 31 of 2 Hynes Court, Farmingdale, was operating the vehicle under the influence of alcohol and he was taken into custody. The vehicle was impounded for safety checks.

Chan was charged with Driving While Intoxicated and was arraigned at First District Court in Hempstead on Thursday.

Additional charges could be considered; the investigation is continuing, police said.

Donna November 16, 2012 at 02:45 PM
Oh my god @ Yankee John burn in hell. The poor guy was crossing the street. Just happened to be on a skateboard instead of walking. The drunk driver is the issue here. The outcome would have been the same wether the guy was walking or skateboarding. Maybe if people stopped driving drunk this guy would still be alive today. If feel sport for you and your ignorance.
C.M.G-R November 16, 2012 at 02:56 PM
"Maybe if idiot punk hoodlums stopped skateboarding?!" Are you a psychopath? The driver was DRUNK. Why on earth would you blame the victim? Have you ever seen signs that read "Share the Road?!" Has the recent gas shortage taught you that perhaps you need to rethink that four-ton gasoline guzzler? I am a driver, but also a pedestrian and bike rider, and being hit by a careless (let alone DRUNK!) driver is my worst nightmare. I knew Mike in high school and he was well-liked by all--I feel so badly for his family.
MKH81 November 16, 2012 at 02:57 PM
JP, I agree with you. Yankee John is stupid suits you. I can't believe someone could post something so insensitive. Maybe if people stopped driving under the influence then they wouldn't take away loved ones. Skateboarding isn't a crime, DWI is! Next time you should think before you actually post something completely ridiculous because the life of a good guy was taken way too soon!
Unknowns November 16, 2012 at 03:23 PM
The article says nothing about how "drunk" the driver was he could very well have had like a .09 or .10 BAC meaning one drink or a drink and half.. I'm sure most of are guilty of have a beer or two and getting behind the wheel meaning it could have been any of us.. It's an unfortunate story..
Kenny Chan November 16, 2012 at 03:41 PM
Kenny is a good friend of my, i know sometims we make wrong decisions but why a 28 year old would be skate boarding at 1:00am? if you drink you should never put yourself behind the wheel, and posting his address in public its not the right thing to do either.
john November 16, 2012 at 03:48 PM
I think any person skateboarding in 30 degree whether at 12:20 am on a Thursday night with no reflective gear on is a target for a car to hit him. It wouldn't have mattered if he was drunk or sober, because it could have happened to anyone driving down that road sober or drunk. Elderly or inexperienced or talking to the person in the passenger seat. The mistake Kenny took was that he had alcohol in him. Who knows if he left diner like I am sure all of you had a wedding or party that you have been to with your parents or loved ones nd got behind the wheel and said, "well I only had two drinks I am fine" That's all. Reports and witness confirmed that he tried to avoid the skate border crossing in front of the his car but could not avoid hitting him. The car was not speeding or anything. So one bad decision destroyed two lives. So my point to the story is Kenny is not the only person at fault and everybody needs to be held accountable. Skate boarder like mountain biker or any extreme sport need to have a place time for them.
john2 November 16, 2012 at 04:51 PM
dude, what part of dwi don't you not understand? 1 drink , 2 drinks who cares.. he shouldn't have been driving in the first place.. stop defending your stupid friend.. oh, and trying to avoid the victim and driving slow doesn't make him an innocent victim here.. try telling that to families who lost loved ones to dui retards
Golf26 November 16, 2012 at 04:55 PM
Statements like "why is a 28 year old is skateboarding?" or "why is someone out on the street so late?" are completely ridiculous. Why is anyone getting behind the wheel of a car after drinking? There is no excuse for that, nor should there be any tolerance. This should not even be up for debate. Walking around Farmingdale I assume EVERYONE is drunk. That goes for all on Long Island really. All I see are people speeding, not stoping at stop signs, texting/talking on their cell phone, generally not paying attention or caring about other people on the road. You aren't safe at 10:00 AM or 12:20 AM. My condolences are with the family of Michael Gradzki.
john2 November 16, 2012 at 04:55 PM
hope you don't loose any of your family to a dui driver like i did.. like you, your friend is an idiot..
john2 November 16, 2012 at 05:02 PM
so your'e saying the skateboarder was at fault here? you are a moron to even consider putting any blame to the victim.. hey dumass, not a crime to be skateboarding..
Kris November 16, 2012 at 06:07 PM
He was killed on a cross walk. A cross walk.
jc7 November 16, 2012 at 06:35 PM
your reports and witnesses are false. You must be trying to desperately defend your friend who is going to rot in jail for DWI. The guy was drunk, made the decision to get behind the wheel and killed someone. He could have been walking, biking, rollerblading, or unicycling, it doesn't matter. Your criminal's decision led to him killing someone. My suggestion is you shut your mouth before karma catches up with you and you lose someone you dearly love.
Hate Ignorance November 16, 2012 at 06:39 PM
Let me set a few of you narrow-minded, ignorant, drunk-driver-lovers straight. Whether you have ONE, TWO, THREE or MORE drinks, YOU ARE STILL A DRUNK DRIVER. It doesn't matter who else has possibly done that in their life, what matters is the situation that the WHOLE TOWN OF FARMINGDALE has been presented with at this EXACT MOMENT and that is that KENNY CHAN DROVE INTOXICATED AND MURDERED SOMEONE. HE KILLED AN INNOCENT MAN. Thats what it boils down to. For you ignorant jerkoffs who are stereo-typing a skateboarder, how about if we stereo-type the person who drove drunk. If you wanna go there, please let me know and I will battle it out with you personally, bc not for nothing, my first car ever over a decade ago was cracked up by a DRUNK DRIVER who LOOKED JUST LIKE KENNY CHAN, so lets leave the stereo-typing out of this, otherwise I will make other points right here, right now. Last time I checked it is not a crime to RIDE A BIKE, A SKATEBOARD or WALK so all of you calm the hell down. He had every right to ride his skateboard, whether it was sunny, warm, cold whatever...he had that right. NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS WHY HE WAS RIDING SO LATE. Did you ever think of any possible scenarios as to why he was riding it so late? Lets think of a few right now. Hmmmm, maybe he had a drink or two and didnt want to drive...see now that is the repsponsible thing to do! Maybe he lived a few blocks from where he was going and didn't need to drive his car. Whatever it was, a LIFE WAS LOST.
jc7 November 16, 2012 at 06:39 PM
Don't defend your criminal friend. If he killed your loved one in the same fashion your mouth would not be running on this forum.
J November 16, 2012 at 06:40 PM
Yes it sucks he was dwi but if ur out on a skateboard at midnight, just like small animals, ur going to get run over .
jc7 November 16, 2012 at 06:40 PM
Do you feel better about yourself Kris?? Be careful where you put your 2 cents.
jc7 November 16, 2012 at 06:44 PM
Manslaughter will be the charge.
Hate Ignorance November 16, 2012 at 06:44 PM
And because a LIFE WAS LOST, you should all shut up and stop supporting a person who chose to selfishly drive drunk. It is the holiday's right now and this poor man's family is grieving right now and I am sure that your ignorant posts and comments are not appreciated. If this was one of your family members, all u CHAN SUPPORTERS would be singing a different tune. Let this poor man REST IN PEACE.
lu November 16, 2012 at 07:01 PM
Regardless of anything else, the skateboarder had the right away on a designated cross walk. The area is very well lit with many lights and the driver was making a LEFT hand turn . Obviously he did not look before turning.
Hate Ignorance November 16, 2012 at 07:06 PM
I agree @lu
lu November 16, 2012 at 07:07 PM
Wow, you should go to his wak on sunday becasue I know most of the town of Farmingdale will personally be there. But who care about a son, brother, best friend, uncle, cousin anyway right? What kind of person would say that about anyone? You must not have a heart at all.
italianqt819 November 16, 2012 at 07:07 PM
You all are complete idiots. The reason the skateboarder was skating was because he was at the bar that night and instead of getting behind the wheel and driving drunk like Mr. Chan, he made a better decision and didn't drive home, he skateboarded. He lived so close to the bar he could walk but obviously it was cold out so to get home quicker he grabbed his board. Why on earth would you idiots blame the victim? The other guy was drunk so he is at fault regardless of what the skateboarder was doing. You people need to learn the law and have a heart. An innocent person is now dead once again because someone decided to once again drive drunk. I hope Mr. Chan now realizes the decisions he made that night effected not only himself but everyone else around him including an innocent human being and their loved ones. I bet if he could do it all over again he would do it differently, but we dont always get do overs in life, especially not when it comes to killing someone. I hope he goes to jail where he can think long and hard everyday about what he did that night.
J November 16, 2012 at 07:20 PM
Skateboarding home drunk and high is no better than DWI. Both were impaired than. No one person can take the blame for actions that lead to this event.
lu November 16, 2012 at 07:25 PM
Once again, skateboarding drunk is not a crime (and no one knows if he even was), also he was a CROSSWALK. He wasn't skateboarding all over the street.He committed no crime.
J November 16, 2012 at 07:29 PM
It should be a crime, it is reckless just like driving. He may have been skateboarding all over the street and just stopped at the crosswalk. He may not even have the right to cross the street but took it upon himself to do so leading to the event.
Anon November 16, 2012 at 07:44 PM
I find it hard to believe someone gets killed by drunk driver who wasn't speeding. I know because ive been hit by a car and lived to tell the story. Lucky for me the guy was sober and wasnt speeding. Ppl only defending Kenny, because he is a "so called respected guy " in the car community. But if it was drunk driver who killed KC, then ppl would be going crazy accusing the guy of shit. Its like ppl could care less about the guy he killed and are more concerned with Kenny .. smh !
Joe Dowd (Editor) November 16, 2012 at 07:53 PM
I'm closing the comments now at the request of the grieving family.
Steven J. Fahey November 20, 2012 at 05:54 PM
My thoughts and prayers go out to the Gradzki Family. Micheal's Funeral Mass was this morning and my family attended. I knew Micheal, he was a good kid and his father Eugene and his family must be devastated. If society can't understand that having even ONE drink and getting behind the wheel of a 4000 lb vehicle is a recipe for disaster, than we are all doomed. I have DWI arrests in my past and thank God I was fortunate enough to get through it without hurting myself or god forbid someone else. Please, PLEASE. Understand the message. DON'T DRINK AND DRIVE!!
Nikas January 08, 2013 at 06:52 PM
and the Man has been aquited of all charges, what a crock of Sh$t.
Nikas January 08, 2013 at 06:53 PM
All charges have been dismissed.


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