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Driver in fatal 2018 Greenport crash sentenced to four to 12 years in prison

The Greenport man responsible for a 2018 DWI crash that left a Queens man dead was sentenced to four to 12 years in prison Monday morning, according to a court spokesperson.

Glenn Zaleski, 37, pleaded guilty to aggravated vehicular homicide and aggravated driving while intoxicated last June. Under terms of the plea, Judge Fernando Camacho set his sentence at no more than 15 years in prison.

Mr. Zaleski had originally been facing a maximum of 25 years behind bars.

Monday’s proceedings took place virtually due to COVID-19 restrictions.

Anthony Rutkowski, an attorney for Mr. Zaleski, did not immediately respond to a request for comment Monday.

The sentence of 4-12 years was specific to the aggravated vehicular homicide charge, according to a district attorney spokesperson. He was sentenced 1-3 years for the aggravated DWI charge, which will run concurrently to the first sentence.

Mr. Zaleski was driving a 2016 Dodge pick-up truck eastbound on Route 48 near Chapel Lane around 8:30 a.m. July 15, 2018, when he crossed over into westbound traffic and struck a minivan with seven occupants, according to police. He was originally charged with driving while intoxicated and suffered only minor injuries in the crash, police said at the time. He was later arraigned on a 30-count indictment with upgraded charges.

Witnesses said Mr. Zaleski swerved to the right of the road and overcorrected, crossing the double yellow line at “a high rate of speed” into the minivan. The force of the collision pushed the minivan off the road, prosecutors said at his initial arraignment in Southold Town Justice Court.

The driver of the van, You Feng Yang, 51, of Flushing was pronounced dead two hours later at Stony Brook University Hospital. Two passengers in the van were also airlifted to Stony Brook for treatment of serious injuries. The other four passengers, all adults from Flushing, were treated at local hospitals for injuries that were not life-threatening, according to police.

A blood test taken at the hospital following the crash showed Mr. Zaleski had a blood alcohol content of 0.23 percent, prosecutors said.

Judge Camacho said at a 2019 court appearance that he had taken into account that Mr. Zaleski, who has remained in county jail since his 2018 arrest, has been a positive influence on younger inmates.

“I’m told by staff at that facility that he’s been housed at that he’s been of tremendous support,” Judge Camacho said at the time. “That’s been taken into account (in the plea deal).”