The mother of a Long Island man who killed five people when he smashed head-on into an Uber car said she’s sorry — and that her son would not have been able to live with the guilt.
“My son would not have been able to live with that,” Aida Perez, 45, told The Post Tuesday, referring to her late son, Justin Mendez.
“I’m at peace with where he’s at because I know that if he would have stood, either way, his fault or not, he would have played it over in his own mind that [he] took these people’s lives.”
“And Justin would not be able to function.”
Justin Mendez, 22, was among five people killed when he tried to outrun police Saturday night and slammed head-on into a Toyota Prius driven by Uber driver Farhan Zahid, a married father of three young children.
Also killed were brothers Michael Farrell, 20, and James Farrell, 25, along with 25-year-old passenger Ryan Kiess, according to police.
Kiess’ girlfriend, Brianna Maglio, 22, is in critical condition at a nearby hospital.
Quogue Police Chief Chris Isola said Mendez, who had marijuana in the car at the time, sped past a cop shortly before 11:20 p.m. and shut off his headlights before losing control of his Nissan Maxima.
“For the families, I am very sorry,” his mother said. “For that father that passed, leaving three small children, and all the family members that are suffering, I am very sorry for your loss.
“I don’t know about the investigation,” Perez said. “I just lost my son. I’m not interested in that right now.”
She said her son was going home after doing laundry with his girlfriend when he crashed.
She said he had moved out of their home in Shirley about a year ago, and remembered him as “a peaceful person” who worked caring for the elderly and disabled for the past three years.
“We called him our big teddy bear,” Perez said. “He treated everyone with respect. Better than I did, actually.”