Mother Of UPS Worker Fatally Struck By Vehicle Breaks Down In Tears On The Stand During Death By Auto Trial

JERSEY CITY – The mother of 58-year-old Angel Rivera started crying while standing in the witness stand. Her son was hit by a vehicle in Secaucus last year. She was continuously crying remembering and telling about the day when her son didn’t get back home from his job.

The accident happened on 21st of February which left Rivera dead.

When his 89-year-old mother Carmen Nieves Rivera was asked about the day, she said, “I was glued to the radio. I suspected that something had happened to him because he was always on time.” Then she began to cry while resting her head on her hand and added, “They told me a car had hit him.”

Rivera was hit by a Volkswagon Jetta, which was driven by Bryant A. Almanzar. He was thrown 141 feet away from the collision spot due to which his leg cut from his body.

The offender was charged with causing death, resisting arrest, and driving under the influence of alcohol.

Hudson County Prosecutor Stephen Natoli said in an opening statement, Almanzar was travelling 50 miles an hour in a 25 mile per hour zone when he lost control of his vehicle; it jumped the curb and hit Rivera who was on the sidewalk.

The cops present at the accident spot smelled alcohol on Almanzar’s breath and when they tried to take him into custody, he used physical force to resist.

According to defense attorney Michael Noonan, the blood sample was taken for an intoxication test which showed his BAC level at 0.036 percent which is less than the amount required for driving. He said that it is proven by the intoxication test that he was not driving under the influence of alcohol. He added that the road was covered with snow and that the speed at which he was driving the vehicle was not calculated correctly because it was calculated keeping in mind the terms and conditions of the dry road. If it was calculated properly using the conditions of icy road, then the speed is estimated to be 34 miles per hour.

Noonan said about resisting arrest, “They try to grab him and he tenses up. He is put in a compliance hold and he immediately complies.” Almanzar was not alone in the vehicle when the accident happened; his girlfriend was travelling with him.

Under the law implemented in New Jersey, any individual who is 21-year-old or older and chooses to get behind the wheel with a blood-alcohol level of 0.08 percent or higher can be charged with DUI. A driver under the age of 21-year-old can be charged for DUI with a BAC level 0.01 percent or higher.

The offender was initially charged for DUI, but the Hudson County Superior Court Judge Patrick Arre said that the jury cannot ask for the charge because the defendant’s BAC level was less than the limit allowed for driving.

The schedule for the testimony to resume is set for Monday at 9 a.m.

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Matthew V. Portella

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The Law Office of Matthew V. Portella, LLC. is a full service law firm where attorneys with their extensive experience provide strong & Aggressive defense against DWI/DUI & Criminal cases.