ROTTERDAM – The man who survived early Sunday morning’s head-on crash in Rotterdam has been charged with vehicular manslaughter, accused of driving drunk and causing the crash and killing a 33-year-old mother, authorities said.
Oscar F. Lopez, 31, of Rotterdam, was arrested and charged after being airlifted to the hospital. He faces first-degree vehicular manslaughter and felony DWI counts.
Killed in the crash was Amanda Slaven, 33, of Rotterdam, a mother of a son. She was pronounced dead at the scene, police said.
The crash happened at around 12:20 a.m. on Hamburg Street, in the area of Chism Street, police said.
Police determined Lopez’ pickup truck slammed head-on into the SUV driven by Slaven.
“Following an investigation from the Rotterdam Police Department it was found the cause of the accident included alcohol consumption and speed on behalf of Oscar Lopez,” police said in a release.
Lopez was airlifted to Albany Medical Center for treatment. The release did not indicate the severity of his injuries, but indicated he was arraigned and held by the Schenectady County Sheriff’s Office in lieu of bail.
Lopez’ DWI charge was increased to a felony due to him having a previous DWI conviction in the past 10 years, police said.
He also faces one count of aggravated unlicensed operation, reckless driving and a citation for speeding, police said.
At the scene Sunday, fresh flowers lay near a bent sign. Some distance away, a votive candle waited in the rain next to a utility pole. A street surveillance camera could be seen on another pole at the corner of Hamburg and Chism.
On a street nearby Sunday afternoon, outside a residence associated with Slaven, a man comforted a woman.
The man recalled Slaven as an awesome person and mother to her son. He also referenced the allegations against Lopez.
“Already was arrested for DWI, lost his license and to take a young mother’s life, 33 years old..” the man said.
The woman soon became too overcome to continue. Neither gave their names.
Police thanked the Colonie Police Department, Carman Fire Department, Rotterdam EMS, Schenectady County Sheriff’s Office, state police and the Schenectady County Unified Communications Center for their assistance.
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