Driver in double-fatality arraigned
STAMFORD -- The 39-year-old woman accused of killing two men changing a tire on the shoulder of Interstate-95 in Darien last month was arraigned on drunken-driving and evading responsibility charges Monday morning.
Candice Blanks of Bedford Street, Stamford, appeared briefly at state Superior Court and was given a new court date for Nov. 16. The Connecticut State Police at the Troop G barracks in Bridgeport said Blanks caused an Oct. 16 accident on the right-hand shoulder in Darien that killed Felipe Chagas, 19, of Bethel and Lucas Silva, 22, of Stamford.
The two men stood to the left of a 1999 Chevrolet Cavalier off the southbound lanes of I-95 in Darien when a 2003 Lincoln Aviator driven by Blanks struck and killed them, authorities say. Blanks is accused of fleeing from the fatal accident scene. State police troopers caught her moments later on I-95 in Darien after authroties broadcast details of the hit-and-run.
Contrary to earlier news reports, Blanks has not been charged with vehicular manslaughter, attorney Agustin Sevillano said. Relatives of Chagas hired Sevillano in the wake of the fatal accident.
The accident remains under investigation by the state police. She faces one count of driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol and two counts of evading responsibility involving a fatal car accident.
"It's a mathematical process to reconstruct an accident," Sevillano said. "It takes some time."
Several friends and relatives of Chagas and Silva huddled outside the prosecutors' offices at the Stamford courthouse after Blanks' brief court appearance Monday morning. They declined to comment on the court proceedings.
Jeff Morganteen can be reached at jeff.morganteen.@scni.com and 203-964-2215