A 43-year-old car wash worker from Queens has been charged with vehicular manslaughter and drunk driving for allegedly striking and killing a 54-year-old woman heading to her clean vehicle while he was impaired, prosecutors said.
Edwin Vargas allegedly had a blood-alcohol level of .115, above the .08 legal limit, when he drove a vehicle off the cleaning rack and hit victim Tracy McManus as she headed toward her newly cleaned car at the wash and lube shop on Cross Bay Boulevard and Desarc Road Monday, Queens prosecutors said Wednesday.
McManus had just tipped the workers who cleaned her car and was heading toward her vehicle when Vargas, who was behind the wheel of another customer's 2011 gray Jeep Liberty, slammed into her. She died of her injuries at a hospital.
Vargas, of Richmond Hill, was arraigned late Tuesday on the charges. He faces up to seven years in prison if convicted. No attorney information for him was immediately available.
“If you have a job that requires you to get behind the wheel of a vehicle, coming to work intoxicated is selfish and dangerous, with potentially fatal consequences," Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz said in a statement. "This is a heartbreaking, senseless tragedy and a woman who just wanted to get her car washed is dead because of the defendant’s alleged actions."