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Charges upgraded against man after fatal car accident


Posted On behalf of Michael D'Amico of D'Amico & Pettinicchi, LLC on Jan 05, 2014 in Fatal Motor Vehicle Accidents

A 26-year-old Connecticut man is now facing a second-degree manslaughter charge after a fatal accident that killed a 21-year-old college student from Middlebury. According to Greenwich Police reports, at 2 a.m. on Dec. 28, the man hit the woman in a parking lot after she had visited a local restaurant with a friend.

The woman was pinned under the car, and despite pleas from the woman's friend to stop, he drove off, dragging the woman three blocks along South Water Street. She was taken to Stamford Hospital, where she later died.

Police arrested the man the next day after they spotted his car parked in a parking lot on William Street. When he appeared in Connecticut Superior Court on Dec. 30, manslaughter was added to the original charge of evading responsibility in the death/serious injury of another. He pled not guilty and is being held without bond in connection with the fatal accident. Investigators learned that although he was living in Ridgefield, the man is a resident alien from Russia.

If the victim's family files a lawsuit, the fact that the man chose to drive away instead of stopping could work in their favor. In Connecticut, second-degree manslaughter charges are lodged when an individual operates a motor vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, resulting in the death of another person. Records show he pled guilty to illegal possession of marijuana in Danbury in 2007, so the court could take that into consideration. If the investigation shows he was drinking at the time of the accident in December, that information could strengthen the plaintiff's case.

Source: "Connecticut laws and regulations, Sentencing Statistics for Second Degree Manslaughter with a Motor Vehicle," Chief Attorney Christopher Reinhart, Oct. 12, 2010

Source: Greenwich Patch, "UPDATE: Police ID Car Involved in Fatal Greenwich Hit-and-Run Crash", Barbara Heins , December 29, 2013