Driver gets six months in death of 15-year-old

06/24/2010 12:00 AM |

Caroline Goss

Caroline Goss, the Mattituck woman who fatally struck a 15-year-old bicyclist while driving drunk in Hampton Bays last summer, was sentenced to six months in jail and five years of probation Thursday.

The sentence, part of a plea bargain proposed by the Suffolk County District Attorney’s office, was handed down by Justice Gary Weber at the Suffolk County courthouse in Riverside.

On Aug. 12, 2009, Ms. Goss was traveling north on Ponquogue Avenue with her 6-year-old son in the passenger seat when her Jeep Cherokee hit Joseph Marino of Hampton Bays. Joseph, who the district attorney’s office later said had swerved into the traffic lane, died the following day.

Police said Ms. Goss was driving with an open bottle of vodka in the vehicle and a blood alcohol level of .13 percent. She and her son were not injured.

Joseph’s mother, Dorothy, and others have protested outside the courthouse since Monday, claiming the sentence is too light.

Prosecutors have said it would be nearly impossible to obtain a felony conviction if the case had gone to trial. There is no evidence to prove Ms. Goss was at fault for Joseph’s death because she was not speeding. Witnesses said the boy swerved in the street just before he was hit.

“The law as it currently stands regarding vehicular manslaughter is not as simple as only having to prove that the defendant drove drunk and someone was killed,” Assistant District Attorney Carl Borelli said in a statement. “Given the facts of this case, a jury could find there is a real probability that this collision would have been unavoidable for even a sober driver.”

Justice Weber agreed with the district attorney’s stance.

“The plea agreement offers the certainty of result and the greatest opportunity available to this court to protect the public,” he stated in a judicial memorandum.

Ms. Goss pleaded guilty April 20 to second-degree vehicular manslaughter, misdemeanor DWI, endangering the welfare of a child and having an open alcohol container in a vehicle.

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19 Comment

  • Iam glad in this economy, it good to see Suffolk county is doing the right thing,With trying to freeze our taxes and helping the working class.

  • It is good that the unions (most of them) agreed to some of the concessions. Everyone else is doing the same thing — making sacrifices to make sure they are still employed. For those that didn’t, it’s sad. I think I’d rather have a job with a little less pay raise in the future, than no job at all.

  • Thank you to the unions for making concessions and therefore also allowing the Ecology center and pools to remain open for another year.

  • 27 retire 6 laid off have fun going to work in the snow when you get stuck thank Lesko 33 less workers this winter

  • 11 years of service as a Highway employee is now in jeapordy. Not because of any budget issues, or economy issues, I would be at ease if that were the case. This was a struggle for power between 2 of the peoples elected officials. John Rouse and Mark Lesko served the people an incredible injustice last night in a meeting that truly showed the true nature of this political chess match. Only the pawns are 6 real live people with families that used there rights as Americans, and voted.

  • It is unfortunate that the decisions to move people and duties around like game pieces , are made by people with little knowledge in any of those areas. The fact that none of the resolutions proposed by Republican members of the Town Council speaks volumes. For those who now know their jobs are safe, I am glad. Now that we the employees (two units) have made concessions lets hope the insanity stops, but I sincerely doubt it.

  • 10 years at the highway department and at this time we as a whole are getting our heads kicked in by the powers up at the hill and their shady ways of doing business. we were the only unit that stood tall. we are also tax payers, we drive the same roads you do, use the same parks and marinas. we are also very reasonable people who in fact have our far share of bills to pay most of the time 1 or 2 months behind. I pesonaly am on the verge of a forcloseure . So what does mr. walsh and the union bring to us ? no raises for 3 years, pay 10% of our medical and more… With a growing family times are tough enough now to add another burden to us just isnt right. im no dummy nor am i gready but why shoud i give back what is ours written in a contract for another 13 months ? i have spoken to many parks employees and they also feel as if they were taken for a ride, mostly by misinformation from thier unit president…I hope with the up coming holiday season the 3 people who put this vote together will think of the peoples lives that they have greatly effected…as they enjoy THIER raises………..

  • why give back …its already accounted for…. 13 months to go…this is a political game to undermine the working class who cant feed thier families now….when the 13 moths are over we as reasonable people will sit and of corse we know we have to give back but not get railraoded by someone who is getting 10k more this year along with his wife 40k , and thier friend who is also slated for a raise….i feel sorry for all the parks and white collar members who fell for mr walshes visions of more overtime to offset the cost of thier concession. thats alot of over time that townboard want to cut anyway.. reasonable i think not

  • I wish highway had voted before the rest of us but I guess that is the point “they” knew more of us would probably be less persuaded if you had

  • had “they” let us vote when we were supposed to it would have been tuesday am insteed they came up with some crap and told us it was illeagal when it was not.. they even called code on us when we were having a general meeting telling them we were rioting in the shop. walsh was there handing out flyers to the generals telling tem they will have leagal issues if they continued with a non union general meeting that was called for by rouse…well orchestrated mr lesko and his crew too bad we are not afaid of you or your threats of loosing ot once again i feel sorry for you guys and the effect its gonna have one you for the next 3-5 years…….

  • Look up how much you pay in town taxes… a slight raise in taxes would of saved those jobs. By the way 11 childrens ( and one on the way) parents will be out of a job on the first of the new year. Happy Holidays.

  • You stand on your morales. You keep making good on them overspending our money. I would love to know your salary last year, mine was 69,000 with overtime. With all there concessions in there proposal that number would be greatly reduced. I took this job not to get rich, but for the benefits. We did not ask for anymore money, just to let us finish out our existing contract. Then hope for better days. They want to borrow from the pockets of there employees, instead of raising taxes. A 4% tax increase in your Highway taxes would equal approximately $30 per household per year. Good luck to the unions that agreed, I hope you are able to bail the powers that be out again next year.

  • Watever you people all you do is cry and bitch when sumthing is taken away. You people are bitching about paying into medical coverage and not getting any salary increases so what, there are less fortunate ppl out there that don’t get any medical coverage dont have a job or a place to live. YOu white ppl are so fuckin spoiled its not even funny anymore jus shut the fuck and deal with it. YOu guys make so much fuckin money its sick already and live in nice homes and look down at the poor and minorites. I’m glad that the vote passed for you to pay into your insurance and not get any raises you don’t deserve it none of you there, you’re a bunch of lazy asses that don’t do shit and claim you do a great job yea right lol hahahah yall just mad as hell I am goin to enjoy this.

  • You sound like a reasonably intelligent person. I am suprised you are not succeeding in life.

  • go fuck urself

  • yea they pulled down my comment wat a bunch of haters go fuck urselves hahahahahah

  • fuck urself Grod4453 piece of shit i like to know where u live so i can fuck ur ass up SNITCH

  • I agree. I would not have minded a slight tax increase to save a few jobs and keep a few more services open. Times are tough, but I don’t mind paying my fair share of taxes to keep the services that keep Brookhaven a nice place to live and keep our property values up (well, relatively speaking).

  • haters and you keep on taking my comments down fuck you