Two plead not guilty in Suffolk SWI crash

By Sadef Ali Kully

Two Queens men pleaded not guilty to DWI and leaving the scene of a fatal that killed a father and two children from St. Albans July 12 on the Southern State Parkway in Bay Shore, the Suffolk County district attorney’s office said.

Demetri Stewart, 23, of Cambria Heights was charged Tuesday with leaving the scene of a death, criminal facilitation and hindering prosecution and Oneil Sharpe, 24, from Springfield Gardens, was charged with DWI and leaving the scene of an accident Monday in First District Court in Central Islip.

Police said Stewart allegedly drove the suspect O’Neil Sharpe from the scene of the crash. Sharpe was traveling westbound on the Southern State near Exit 41 when he struck the rear of the Ostane family car, a 2005 Toyota, killing three of the occupants. The fourth passenger escaped unharmed, according to police.

Ancio Ostane, 37, and his 8-year old son, Andy and his 4-year old daughter Sephora died in the crash. The sole survivor, mother and wife, Lucnie Bouaz-Ostane escaped from the burning vehicle and was later taken to a hospital in Long Island, said police.

Lucnie Bouaz-Ostane, who spoke with reporters Sunday, said she was completely devastated and in disbelief.

Ancio Ostane, a Haitian immigrant, was a math professor at Medgar Evers College in Brooklyn and his wife is a blood bank technician for hospitals in Brooklyn.

Police said they suspected that Sharpe had either left the scene on foot or someone had helped him escape the scene. He was found later at his mother’s house in Rockville Center off Exit 19, according to police and legal authorities.

Both criminal complaints filed by the Suffolk DA said Stewart was driving behind Sharpe’s car and allegedly helped Sharpe flee from the scene of the accident as the victims’ car burst into flames. Police said Stewart allegedly then took Sharpe to his mother’s home, where he was arrested.

Both Sharpe and Stewart have pleaded not guilty to the DWI and leaving the scene of a fatal accident, according to the Suffolk County DA’s office.

An email from the DA’s office said that driving while intoxicated is a misdemeanor and leaving the scene is a felony punishable by a maximum prison term of 2 1/3 to seven years imprisonment.

Reach Reporter Sadef Ali Kully by e-mail at skully@cnglocal.com or by phone at (718) 260–4546.