May 10, 2021 By Allie Griffin
A Long Island woman who allegedly drove drunk and killed a NYPD Highway officer on the Long Island Expressway last month faces up to 15 years in prison, Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz announced Monday.
Jessica Beauvais, 32, has been indicted on charges of aggravated manslaughter, vehicular manslaughter and other crimes for allegedly striking Officer Anastasios Tsakos dead with her vehicle while drunk in the early hours of April 27.
She then fled the scene of the crash.
Tsakos, a 14-year veteran of the department, was was hit by Beauvais at around 2 a.m. while he was diverting traffic on the highway following a prior crash, according to court documents.
Beauvais, of Hempstead, was allegedly speeding in a 2013 Volkswagen Passat when she approached the scene of the original crash and struck Tsakos, sending him airborne into a nearby patch of grass.
She hit him with so much force that he was thrown nearly 40 feet in the air, Katz said.
Beauvais continued driving, according to the charges, before taking the Horace Harding Expressway ramp. She jumped the curb and mounted the sidewalk, where police surrounded her vehicle.
She then attempted to flee and put her car in reverse, ramming the police vehicle behind her before coming to a complete stop. Officers then arrested her and took her to the 112th Precinct house in Forest Hills, where she took a breathalyzer test, Katz said.
According to the test, she allegedly had a blood alcohol content of .15 — above the legal limit of .08 in New York State — about two hours after the fatal crash.
Officer Tsakos, a father of two young children, was rushed to a local hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
“Posthumously promoted to detective, Officer Anastasios Tsakos was struck while directing traffic and protecting New Yorkers in the aftermath of a fatal one-car crash early that morning,” Katz said in a statement. “This is heartbreaking, and a mother is left alone to raise a six-year-old and a three-year-old.”
Beauvais will be arraigned on May 25 at Queens Supreme Court on a 13-count indictment.
She faces charges of aggravated manslaughter, vehicular manslaughter, leaving the scene of an incident without reporting, operating a motor vehicle while under influence of alcohol and unlawful fleeing a police officer in a motor vehicle among others.
“As alleged, there is a list of bad choices, from drinking and getting high and getting behind the wheel of a car, that ended tragically with the defendant running down Highway Officer Anastasios Tsakos and then trying to get away,” Katz said in a statement.