The driver behind the wheel of car that struck and killed an East Islip woman and her dog Tuesday had been arrested in a prior traffic case in which she ignored a stop sign and was found with four doses of Xanax on her, a spokesman for the Suffolk County district attorney said.
Barbara V. Cottone, 50, of East Islip, was pulled over on Lincoln Avenue in Sayville by New York State Police on Dec. 8, 2015, and was charged with failure to stop at a stop sign and misdemeanor criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree, Suffolk County district attorney spokesman Robert Clifford said in a statement to Newsday.
The Xanax she had was illegally possessed, Clifford said. She has pleaded not guilty to the charges, he added. Online court records show she is due back in court May 5 on those charges.
Cottone has not been charged in the crash that killed Skye Brunetti, 25, who died at the scene after being hit about 9:10 a.m. Tuesday just steps from her front door after dropping off her son at a school bus stop.
Cottone was driving westbound when her car mounted the sidewalk, severed a utility pole and hit Brunetti and her dog, police said.
The crash remains under investigation, the district attorney’s spokesman said.
A woman who answered a cellphone listed for Cottone hung up on a reporter Saturday morning.
Calls to John N. Russo, who is listed in court records as her attorney on the 2015 case, were not immediately returned Saturday morning.