Jessica Beauvais bows her head at her arraignment in May...

Jessica Beauvais bows her head at her arraignment in May as she is indicted in Queens Criminal Court for the killing of NYPD Det. Anastasios Tsakos in a fatal hit-and-run crash. Credit: Corey Sipkin

The trial of a Hempstead woman accused of driving drunk when she struck and killed an NYPD detective from East Northport in 2021 is likely to begin as early as this spring, court officials said Tuesday.

During a brief conference in Queens State Supreme Court, Judge Michael Aloise said that at the next court appearance in the case on March 28 he would set a trial date for Jessica Beauvais, 32, who has been charged with manslaughter and other offenses for hitting Det. Anastasios Tsakos in April 2021 as he was on duty diverting traffic off the Long Island Expressway in Queens.

Aloise said he would also use the March 28 court appearance to deliver his decisions on various defense motions in the case. Court records show that defense attorneys for Beauvais have asked Aloise to bar the prosecution from using certain statements she allegedly made — in violation of her constitutional rights — when she was arrested immediately after the crash and during an interrogation at a Queens police precinct. 

In deciding the various motions, Aloise gave Beauvais’s attorneys until Feb. 16 to file additional papers and prosecutors with the Queens District Attorney's Office until March 10 to file any response.

At earlier pretrial hearings in the case, prosecutors presented witnesses and disclosed a video of Beauvais as she was going through a sobriety test in the hours following the crash. Police said that Beauvais, who has been in custody since her arrest in April 2021, ran through a roadblock Tsakos, 43, had set up on the LIE at Exit 26, striking him with a Volkswagen sedan and causing catastrophic injuries that killed him. In court papers, prosecutors said a uniform pin of Tsakos and his notebook were found in the Volkswagen.

Last month during a hearing, Officer Kevin Wallace, who works in the NYPD collision investigation squad, testified that he was investigating another crash at Exit 27 on the LIE that night when he got a frantic radio call from an officer farther west at Exit 26. Tsakos — who had been diverting traffic off the Expressway at that exit — had been hit, the cop frantically shouted.

NYPD Det. Anastasios Tsakos was killed in a hit-and-run crash on...

NYPD Det. Anastasios Tsakos was killed in a hit-and-run crash on April 27, 2021. Credit: NYPD

“Tsakos is down, Tsakos is down, stop that car, stop that car, Tsakos is hit!” yelled the officer at the roadblock, according to Wallace. Tsakos has been working as Highway Patrol officer before the accident. He was promoted to detective posthumously.

When he looked toward the other exit, Wallace said, he saw a heavily damaged maroon 2013 Volkswagen sedan driving east and erratically changing lanes without signaling.

Police body camera videos played at the hearing showed Wallace, with his gun drawn, ordering Beauvais out of the Volkswagen, and when she balked, pulling her out by force. Wallace said he noticed a strong odor of alcohol and marijuana in the car and that Beauvais had bloodshot eyes. Wallace later testified he believed Beauvais was intoxicated.

Police have said that Beauvais showed a blood alcohol level of .15, twice the legal limit, some two hours after the crash. 

Officers didn’t question Beauvais on the videos when she was arrested by her vehicle at Exit 29 at the service road. But prosecution court papers indicated that she made several spontaneous statements while being driven away in a police car, including “I don’t deserve this, what did I do?” and “I am not a criminal."

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