Southold business man is charged with DWI in fatal limo crash in Cutchogue
CUTCHOGUE, Long Island (WPIX) -- A Southold business man has been arrested and charged with DWI in the fatal limousine crash that killed four New York area women.
According to The Suffolk Times, 55-year-old Steven Romeo has been charged with DWI. He is the co-owner of a local marine contracting company called Romeo Dimon Marine service. He was also involved in another fatal accident in January 2014, when a bucket fell off a skid-steer loader, operated by Mr. Romeo, killed a 30-year-old worker.
Romeo's ex-wife Nancy Romeo, who lives on the block where the crash took place, confirmed he was involved in the crash and was "doing fine." A court source said he will be arraigned at his bedside at Eastern Long Island Hospital in Greenport Sunday afternoon, according to a court source. Judge Rudolph Bruer left Southold Town Justice Court for the arraignment shortly before noon Sunday. As he exited the building, Mr. Bruer declined to speak with reporters.
Four women in their early 20's were killed in the crash. Their four friends as well as the limo driver were seriously injured in the 5:15 p.m. crash, according to Southold Town police chief Martin Flatley.
The vehicle had attempted a U-turn at a median on a busy stretch of Route 48, Flatley said. The limo -- registered to a Westchester County dispatch base -- was hit was such force by the Dodge pickup truck, it nearly split in two.
The most seriously injured were airlifted by Suffolk County police to Stony Brook University Hospital, the driver of the limo was taken to Eastern Long Island Hospital.
Three of the women were pronounced dead at the scene of the incident, a fourth woman died at Peconic Bay Medical Center in Riverhead. A group of relatives and friends held each other, sobbing at PBMC Saturday night.Several of the victims are from New York City and at least one is from Suffolk County, Flatley confirmed Saturday. Police have not release the victim's names or their conditions as of Sunday afternoon. A State police accident reconstruction team inspected the crash site Saturday night.
The alleged drunk driver, initially fled the scene of the accident before police caught up to him and charged him with driving while intoxicated, Flatley said. Suffolk County prosecutors were still awaiting the results of the driver's preliminary blood test, which could ratchet up the charges.
Southold Town Police initially said the victims were part of a bridal party, but sources said they were simply friends out for a weekend getaway. The women rented the stretch limo so they could drink and travel safely between the vineyards.