WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. (CBSNewYork/AP) — A White Plains firefighter has been sentenced to up to 15 years in prison after pleading guilty to vehicular homicide and other charges.
Westchester County District Attorney Janet DiFiore announced the sentencing of Erik Refvik on Friday.
She said Refvik pleaded guilty to all charges in a 16-count indictment. They included manslaughter, drunken driving, reckless driving and other charges.
“Today, as a result of his actions last November, and after pleading guilty to the most serious DWI charge in New York State, this defendant will now face substantial time in state prison,” DiFiore said in a statement. “While that won’t replace the loss of a wife and mother and cannot repair the damage done to the victim’s family, hopefully it will give the family some measure of closure.”
Prosecutors said Refvik was off-duty on Nov. 3, 2014 when he drove the wrong way on South Lexington Avenue.
His SUV hit a car stopped at a traffic light, killing 47-year-old Reyda La Madrid and seriously injuring her husband, 49-year-old Edgar Lopez, prosecutors said. The couple was delivering newspapers at the time of the incident.
Refvik’s Chevrolet Tahoe was traveling at 65 mph when it collided with La Madrid’s Honda Civic, prosecutors said. The force of the crash pushed the Honda nearly half a football field down South Lexington Avenue.
After the crash, Refvik put his SUV in reverse and slammed into the lobby of a nearby apartment building in an apparent attempt to get away, investigators said.
Before the crash, prosecutors said Refvik was seen on video drinking at a number of bars in downtown White Plains. His blood-alcohol content was estimated at .21, more than 2 1/2 times the legal limit of 0.08.
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