FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, January 17, 2018
Drunk Driver Who Caused Woman to Fall to her Death from
Elevated Highway Sentenced to up to 15 Years in Prison
Struck Disabled Car, which hit Staten Island Woman, who then
Plunged from Elevated Roadway in Greenpoint
Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez today announced that a 44-year-old man from New Jersey was sentenced to five to 15 years in prison for causing the death of a 49-year-old woman. The victim was outside a disabled vehicle that was stopped on an elevated highway when the defendant, driving drunk, struck the car, which then hit the woman and caused her to be thrown over a guardrail and down to the roadway below.
District Attorney Gonzalez said, “The reckless and criminal behavior of this defendant caused a tragic and completely avoidable death, devastating a family that was returning from a joyous celebration. I will remain vigilant in keeping Brooklyn’s roads safe for everyone and will continue to vigorously prosecute unlawful and dangerous drivers.”
The District Attorney identified the defendant as Vladimir Menin, 44, of Fort Lee, NJ. He was sentenced today by Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Danny Chun to an indeterminate sentence of five to 15 years in prison following his guilty plea last year to aggravated vehicular homicide.
The District Attorney said that, according to the investigation, on August 29, 2016 at about 2:45 a.m., a vehicle driven on the Brooklyn Queens Expressway by the victim’s sister became disabled from a flat tire and subsequent wheel damage. The victim, Aissatou Diallo, 49, of Staten Island, was in another car with relatives – they were returning from a wedding celebration – and her vehicle stopped in front of the disabled car to offer assistance.
Diallo was standing in front of her sister’s car, on the shoulder of the road, when the defendant, driving a black 2011 BMW while speeding in a work zone, crashed into the disabled vehicle. The car then hit the victim and the impact propelled her over the guard rail, the evidence showed. She fell approximately 50 feet to the roadway below, on the corner of Apollo Street and Meeker Avenue in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. She was pronounced dead about 45 minutes later. Her sister suffered injuries as a result of the collision and her 17-year-old son and 11-year-old daughter were also present during the ordeal.
The defendant, who was driving with a suspended license, fled on foot, and was chased down and restrained by relatives of the victim. He was belligerent and showed signs of intoxication, the investigation found. More than four hours after the incident, the defendant’s blood-alcohol level was measured at .19, more than twice the legal limit of .08. An extrapolation showed that his blood-alcohol level at the time of the crash was about four times the legal limit.
The case was prosecuted by Senior Assistant District Attorney Jacob Uriel and Assistant District Attorney Zoila del Castillo of the District Attorney’s Grey Zone Trial Bureau, under the supervision of Danielle Eaddy, Bureau Chief.