The suspected drunk driver in the deadly July Fourth crash on the Lower East Side, Daniel Christopher Hyden, 44, has a long criminal record, including a violent attack on an addiction counseling trainee and multiple DUI convictions.

Before police alleged Hyden rammed a pickup truck into a crowded park, killing three and injuring eight, he had a history of violence and substance abuse issues. In February, he assaulted Atiba Boyce, 41, by throwing a chair at him during a class at an East Harlem substance abuse counseling school.

“I never really smelled alcohol on his breath, but something was off,” Boyce said, describing Hyden as aggressive. The NYPD had charged Hyden with assault and harassment for this incident and had two other sealed assault cases from January 2020 and October 2022.

NYC Tragedy: Repeat Offender Linked to Fatal Drunk Driving Incident
Truck driven by suspected drunk driver, Daniel Hyde, age 44 is brought into a garage at the NYPD 7th Pct.

Hyden, a substance abuse counselor and self-described “ex-professional addict”, openly discussed his addiction struggles and legal issues in his book, “The Sober Addict.”

One significant legal issue occurred in Wisconsin in 2015, where Hyden was caught driving drunk with a blood-alcohol content of 0.13%, above the legal limit of 0.08%. He had previous DUI convictions in New Jersey in 2006 and 2011 and eventually pleaded guilty to third-offense drunken driving, receiving a 130-day sentence.

The deadly Lower East Side crash on July 4th, where Hyden allegedly drove drunk, killing three and injuring eight, has drawn parallels to the 2021 Waukesha Christmas parade tragedy in Wisconsin.

Susan Opper, Waukesha County District Attorney, expressed sympathy for the victims of the Lower East Side incident, stating, “If the allegation is true that the driver was impaired at the time of the events, we are outraged and hope he will be held fully accountable.”

NYC’s July 4th Crash Involves Driver with Multiple DUI Convictions
Members of the NYPD escorted 44-year-old Daniel Christopher Hyden from the 7th precinct in Manhattan.

Hyden’s latest legal trouble before the crash involved the February altercation with Boyce at Recoveries R Us in East Harlem. Boyce reported Hyden’s antagonistic behavior, leading to a physical confrontation.

Boyce expressed his desire for prosecutors to pursue anger management or community service for Hyden, stating, “I wanted him to deal with his emotions because what I said shouldn’t have triggered him to respond the way he did.”