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Alcoholism & Addiction

Bronx Mother Kills 11-Year-Old Girl in Drunk-Driving Crash

A Bronx mother was arrested for driving under the influence on the West Side Highway with her daughter and six other young girls in the car. Carmen Huertas, 31, crashed her vehicle early Sunday, killing an 11-year-old passenger and injuring several others.

Huertas was driving a tan 1998 Mercury Sable north on the West Side Highway with seven girls to her Mount Eden home for a sleepover, according to Sgt. Carlos Nieves.

Newsday reports that police said Huertas lost control of the car at 12:44 a.m. as she approached the West 96 Street Exit and careened over the roadway. The car then flipped over several times and struck a tree, police said. Some girls were ejected from the vehicle by the force of the impact, police said.

Leandra Rosado, 11, of Chelsea, was taken to St. Luke’s Hospital in Manhattan, where she was pronounced dead at 1:22 a.m. Some of the other passengers, whose ages range from 11 to 14, suffered broken wrists and legs and body contusions, Nieves said. Huertas’ daughter, 11, suffered a broken wrist, according to the spokesman.

Huertas was arrested at the scene and charged with vehicular manslaughter and driving while intoxicated. Police did not know if Huertas had any previous charges for drunken driving.

Leandra’s father, Lenny Rosado, 45, told AM radio station WCBS / 880 he was working the overnight shift as a security guard when he got the phone call his daughter had been killed.

"Oh, I flipped, I flipped. I was in the conference room and I flipped the table that was there. I threw two chairs," he said. "And the first thing I said is, ‘I found what I got to do with my life.’ It’s go to City Hall, go to Congress, go to the White House and they have to have stronger laws against drunken drivers."

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