San Francisco parks worker charged in woman's crash death

SAN FRANCISCO — A San Francisco city gardener was charged Tuesday with vehicular manslaughter and felony hit and run after fatally driving over a woman as she lay with her baby in the grass of a city park.

The 58-year-old Thomas Burnoski, who works for the Recreation and Park Department, was arrested after running over 35-year-old Christine Svanemyr on Sept. 5 as she relaxed with her dog and her then-10-month-old baby at Holly Park.

The San Francisco Chronicle reports (http://bit.ly/H0UrMe) that Burnoski veered onto the lawn from a paved pedestrian path to avoid an unleashed dog. After hitting the woman, he drove to a work meeting.

His lawyers say he didn't realize he had hit a person and that the case was a tragic accident.

Burnoski is scheduled to be arraigned Wednesday.

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