Press-Republican

April 5, 2014

Hearing, trial scheduled in Trombly case

By DAN HEATH Press-Republican
Press-Republican

---- — PLATTSBURGH — A suppression hearing and tentative trial date have been scheduled for a man charged with killing a jogger while allegedly driving drunk in May 2013.

Ronald R. Trombly, 85, of Mooers faces felony charges of second-degree manslaughter, second-degree vehicular manslaughter and criminally negligent homicide, misdemeanor charges of third-degree assault and driving while intoxicated and two violations for failure to use due care to avoid a pedestrian.

His vehicle struck Ashley A. Poissant, 27, of Champlain on May 20 as she and friends were jogging at dusk on Perry’s Mills Road in the Town of Champlain. Poissant succumbed to her injuries the next day.

SUPPRESSION HEARING

Clinton County Assistant District Attorney Nicholas Evanovich said a suppression hearing has been scheduled for Clinton County Court at 9:30 a.m. Friday, April 25.

Evanovich expects the defense to challenge as inadmissible statements that Trombly made the night of the accident, as well as a blood sample collected to determine his blood-alcohol level.

According to the case file, a blood sample obtained at CVPH Medical Center about 90 minutes after the accident showed Trombly’s blood alcohol content was .12 percent.

A blood-alcohol content higher than .08 percent results in a driving-while-intoxicated charge.

TRIAL DATE

A Clinton County grand jury didn’t indict Trombly on any charges last July.

Clinton County District Attorney Andrew Wylie successfully petitioned to resubmit the case to a grand jury, and Trombly was indicted on all of the original charges Nov. 15.

He pleaded not guilty to all charges on Nov. 19.

In January, Trombly rejected a plea offer that would have required him to plead guilty to manslaughter and misdemeanor driving while intoxicated. That would have left him facing three to nine years in state prison and up to $6,000 in fines, as well as state surcharges and fees.

A tentative date for trial by jury before County Court Judge Kevin Ryan has been set for May 12, dependent on Ryan’s court calendar.

CONDITIONS

Court-imposed restrictions on Trombly as he awaits trial include a revoked driver’s license, an ankle monitor capable of registering any consumption of alcohol, a prohibition from leaving the state and monthly meetings with representatives from the Clinton County Probation Department. 

Evanovich said Trombly has complied with all conditions so far.

Trombly had previously faced DWI charges on May 8, 2004, when he allegedly had a blood alcohol content of .18 percent.

He pleaded guilty to a lesser charge of driving with ability impaired on June 17, 2004. His license was suspended for 90 days, and he was required to pay $300 in fines and $80 in surcharges.

Email Dan Heath:dheath@pressrepublican.com