DA: Undocumented immigrant was drunk nearly three times the legal limit when he killed man on tractor

Local News

CAYUGA COUNTY, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — Blood test results returned Monday to the Cayuga County District Attorney show the undocumented immigrant accused of drunk driving and killing a man riding a tractor in Weedsport was drunk nearly three times the legal limit.

Heriberto Perez-Velasquez will face upgraded vehicular homicide and DWI charges based on the test results, according to the DA.

Heriberto Perez-Velasquez, of Guatemala, is scheduled to be arraigned on the upgraded charges Monday evening in the Village of Weedsport.

Monday, a federal judge sent Perez-Velasquez back to the Cayuga County Jail, where he will be held indefinitely on the federal immigration charges.

District Attorney Jon Budellman says, “Had he been sitting in the jail… Mr. Knapp would still be alive. His family would still have him.”

Police say Perez-Velasquez never went to jail after his charge for an aggravated DWI arrest in Wayne County that happened last month.

On October 18, Troopers found Perez-Velasquez drunk in his car. After running away from them, Troopers arrested him and called U.S. Customs and Border Protection when he couldn’t provide identification.

The Cayuga County DA tells NewsChannel 9 that when Customs and Border Protection failed to provide an officer to take Perez-Velasquez into federal custody, State Police took him to the Centralized Arraignment Court in Wayne County.

But, because it was too late for court to still be underway, and because Perez-Velasquez’s charges didn’t quality for pre-arraignment detention, State Troopers let him go with a ticket.

The DA adds that, had arraignment happened, the new bail laws that take effect on January first state-wide and are already being enacted in Wayne County, Perez-Velasquez may still had been out free.

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