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Peekskill Woman Convicted Under Leandra's Law

PEEKSKILL – A city woman became the first person in the county convicted under the recently passed Leandra’s Law, which makes it an automatic felony to drive drunk with a child in the car.

Westchester County District Attorney Janet DiFiore announced Thursday that Marta Amaro-Morales, 43, was found guilty by a non-jury trial of three counts of Aggravated Driving While Intoxicated-Child in Vehicle, which is a class “E” felony, two counts of Driving While Intoxicated, a misdemeanor, and several vehicle and traffic Infractions.

Assistant District Attorney Christine Cervasio prosecuted the case. Amaro-Morales was stopped around midnight on May 30, 2010 on the eastbound Bear Mountain State Parkway by a New York State Trooper, who saw her cross over the double yellow line on one side of the road and the fog line on the other.

After stopping Amaro-Morales, the officer saw three children in the vehicle, including two of her own children, who were seven and 11. She also was driving her four-year-old grandchild, who was not secured in a car seat.

The trooper gave Amaro-Morales three field sobriety tests and she arrested after failing them. A blood test showed her blood alcohol concentration to be .09 percent.

Leandra’s Law makes it an automatic felony on the first offense to drive drunk with a person age 15 or younger inside the vehicle. It also made 0.08 the legal blood alcohol content level.

The bill was passed in November of 2009. Amaro-Morales’s sentencing will be September 27. She faces a maximum of four years in state prison.


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