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Astoria Man Awaiting Upgraded Charges Following Death of Drunk Driving Victim

Raife Milligan, pictured, was fatally struck while attempting to cross a street in Manhattan Monday (Photo: GoFundMe)

May 6, 2022 By Michael Dorgan

An Astoria man who was arrested Monday for allegedly driving drunk and striking an NYU student in Manhattan is awaiting upgraded charges with the victim now declared dead.

Michael de Guzman, 49, was charged with driving while intoxicated after plowing into 21-year-old Raife Milligan who was attempting to cross East Houston Street near First Avenue at around 2:45 a.m. on Monday.

De Guzman, who is from 31st Avenue, allegedly got behind the wheel of his Chevrolet Camaro sports car while drunk and struck Milligan on the roadway.

Milligan, who was studying biochemistry, was found by responding officers lying on the road with trauma to the head. He was transported by EMS to Bellevue Hospital but succumbed to his injuries Tuesday, police said.

Police said that de Guzman remained at the scene following the crash. He was arrested and charged by police at around 5:20 a.m. Monday. The charges are now likely to be upgraded with Milligan’s death, cops said.

Milligan was from Indiana and had a huge passion for playing volleyball, according to a GoFundMe page set up to help cover the costs associated with his funeral. He also enjoyed listening to The Beatles and playing video games.

“He just loved life to the fullest always thinking of others first,” wrote Donna Begle, who created the GoFundMe page.

Milligan, according to Begle, also did volunteer work in the city by delivering food to the elderly.

“Raife was one in a million, brilliant beyond his years,” Begle wrote. “Saying he will be missed is an understatement. He impacted so many lives in a positive way and will be greatly missed.”

The deadly crash took place at East Houston Street near First Avenue (Photo by GMaps)

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