A Richmond Hill man is facing up to a decade and a half in prison after he was criminally charged with manslaughter and driving under the influence after allegedly slamming his Mercedes Benz into a NYC Department of Environmental Protection truck and killing a 36-year-old worker who was ejected from the vehicle and then pinned beneath the wreckage on Thursday, July 6.
Errick Persaud, 24, of 104th Street in Richmond Hill, was arraigned on July 6 before Queens Criminal Court Judge Scott Dunn on a complaint charging him with manslaughter in the second degree, assault in the second degree, vehicular manslaughter in the second degree, operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or drugs and operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol.
According to the charges, at approximately 2:30 a.m. on July 6, video surveillance footage showed Persaud driving a black Mercedes-Benz at high speed through a steady red light at the intersection of Atlantic Avenue and Lefferts Boulevard in Richmond Hill.
Persaud hit the NYC DEP truck near the intersection. The impact of the collision toppled the truck, ejecting 36-year-old Michael Rodriguez from the passenger seat. The 40-year-old driver of the truck sustained minor injuries.
Police from the 102nd Precinct discovered Rodriguez pinned under the vehicle. First responders worked to free him and EMS rushed him to Jamaica Hospital Medical Center with severe head and body trauma and died due to his injuries. The driver was treated at the scene by paramedics for minor injuries. Persaud also sustained minor injuries as a result of the crash and was transported to NewYork-Presbyterian Queens Hospital for treatment.
After the accident, a breathalyzer was administered to Persaud, which indicated he had a blood alcohol content of .134%, which was above the legal threshold of .08 percent.
“Drunk driving is never acceptable and this defendant’s alleged selfish actions have led to tragic consequences for a city worker who was doing his job,” Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz said. “We will seek justice for this victim and his loved ones.”
Judge Dunn set a return date for July 11. If convicted, Persaud faces up to 15 years in prison.