- Rakesh Patel, 33, who worked in the intensive care unit at MedStar Washington Hospital Center, had briefly gone to meet his girlfriend when his car was stolen.
An Indian American doctor was run over and killed by his own car moments after it was stolen in a Washington, D.C. neighborhood earlier this week. Rakesh Patel, 33, who worked in the intensive care unit at MedStar Washington Hospital Center, had briefly gone on March 8 to hand over a package to his girlfriend, Rachel Lincoln.
Citing the police, news reports said Patel pulled his gray Mercedes E350 to a curb near Florida Avenue and U Street in Northwest Washington, got out and walked over to his waiting girlfriend. He set the parcel on the sidewalk. Lincoln hugged Patel, and he kissed her on her forehead. The car was still running and Patel had his back to it, news reports said, citing the police. When he realized that his car was stolen, Patel chased it, but was run over. D.C. Fire and EMS took him to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
The following day police found the Mercedes E350 abandoned on a residential street near the Maryland line. No arrests have been made so far.
The D.C. police have released a video showing Patel’s Mercedes being parked on a street in Northwest Washington. Two people who appear to be men are seen getting out of the vehicle, one from the front-passenger side and the other from the back. Police describe the two people as “persons of interest” in the case.
Patel, who lived in Silver Spring, Maryland, had completed his internal medicine residency and an infectious-disease fellowship and was training as a critical care fellow, according to a statement by MedStar.
Patel’s family is from Ohio, according to The Washington Post. His father Dr. Rajnikant Patel told NBC News that his son was “caring, social and smart.” His life was “taken away for no reason,” he said. His mother, Charulatta Patel said her son was the youngest of five children, two of whom also are doctors. “I always used to call him my baby,” she said to NBC. The killing was senseless, she added. “For what? A car?”
Lincoln, who witnessed Patel being hit by the car described the incident “a nightmare.” She told The Washington Post that she would remember her boyfriend “by his smile, and as a person who “would go out of his way for anybody, not just you or me, but his friends, his family and his patients.” The people he treated were “his biggest passion,” she said, adding that he wanted to “help them get through hard times.”