A New Windsor man was found guilty of a criminally negligent homicide Wednesday in the death of his girlfriend in a drugged driving accident in 2016, according to Orange County District Attorney David Hoovler.
Gregory Cardona, 28, was convicted in connection with the August 2016 death of a woman who died when he lost control of his car, causing it to leave the roadway, go down an embankment, and collided with a tree, the DA's office said.
At the trial, prosecutors proved that sometime between the late-night hours of August 29, 2016, and the early-morning hours of August 30, 2016, Cardona was driving a 2005 Honda on the ramp of Exit 4W off I-84 in the Town of Wallkill when he lost control of the car, causing it to go down the embankment and hit a tree, resulting in the death of the young woman who was his passenger, the DA's office added.
Cardona’s wrecked vehicle was discovered by a volunteer fireman who was driving to work on the morning of August 30. The fireman found that the young woman had died and that Cardona, who was trapped in the driver’s seat, had suffered severe injuries.
Members of the New York State Police and other emergency personnel, including the Town of Wallkill Volunteer Fire Department, responded to the scene and extricated Cardona and removed the victim from the vehicle.
Prosecutors argued that an analysis of Cardona’s blood showed that he was under the influence of marijuana at the time of the crash and that testimony from State Police accident reconstructionists showed that Cardona had also been speeding when he lost control of the car.
Cardona is currently serving two consecutive state prison sentences of two to six years each, after being found to have violated probation on two unrelated cases involving grand larceny and forgery charges.
Cardona faces up to an additional two to four years in prison for the new charged when he is sentenced June 5, the DA's office said.
“No family should have to live with the agony of losing a loved one because someone drove irresponsibly,” said Hoovler. “I am grateful for all of the resources the New York State Police provided, both in the investigation and the prosecution of this difficult case. The diligent efforts and expertise of the members of the New York State Police Collision Reconstruction Unit were integral to our being able to hold this defendant accountable for the death of this young woman.”
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