A 34-year-old firefighter faces DWI and criminally negligent homicide charges after allegedly driving his SUV the wrong way and hitting another vehicle, killing a newspaper delivery woman in the car and injuring her husband, who was driving it, authorities said.
Erik Refvik, a four-year firefighter with the White Plains Fire Department, also was injured in the crash on Martine Avenue in White Plains around 4:30 a.m. Monday. He was off-duty at the time of the crash and was arraigned in his hospital room several hours later.
Police said Refvik had a blood alcohol level of .145 after the crash, nearly double the legal limit. He has been suspended from his job without pay during the investigation.
Investigators think Refvik was driving near Post Road when he allegedly turned the wrong way onto on South Lexington Avenue. He allegedly T-boned the Honda carrying 47-year-old Reyda La Madrid and her 49-year-old husband, Edgar Lopez, as they crossed South Lexington Avenue.
Police say the Chevrolet Tahoe Refvik was driving continued on South Lexington Avenue after the crash, pushing the Honda about 200 feet down the road and trapping the couple inside.
La Madrid was pronounced dead at the scene. Authorities say she was in the back seat folding newspapers at the time of the impact. She was an independent contractor delivery service provider for Publisher's Circulation Fulfillment, Inc. The company said in a statement it was "saddened by this devastating accident and our thoughts and condolences go out to all of Ms. La Madrid's Family."
Her husband was taken to the hospital with internal and upper body injuries; he was undergoing surgery late Monday afternoon. Lopez and La Madrid moved to New York from Peru. They have two children, ages 19 and 14.
Police say Refvik was allegedly speeding at the time of the crash, in addition to being under the influence of alcohol. Information on an attorney for him wasn't immediately available.