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Asya Ulmer: Passenger in fatal 'grabbed my arm,' court papers say

Asya Ulmer, left, 21, Rockville Centre, faces charges

Asya Ulmer, left, 21, Rockville Centre, faces charges of second-degree vehicular manslaughter and driving while intoxicated. Nassau County police said Ulmer was driving a 2000 BMW north on North Centre Avenue in Rockville Centre about 5:50 a.m. Sunday morning when she hit a tractor trailer parked near Meehan Lane. The impact killed her passenger, Jennifer Alexis, 21, of Bayside, Queens, police said. (Sept. 16, 2013) Credit: NCPD/Network News

A Rockville Centre woman charged with vehicular manslaughter and drunken driving told police her passenger grabbed at her arm just before the car smashed into a parked tractor-trailer, killing the passenger, according to court records filed Monday.

"My friend told me to turn and I didn't want to. She grabbed my arm and I turned the wheel," Asya Ulmer, 21, of 512 Clinton Ave., told police, the court document said.

"I had one Long Island iced tea," the statement quoted Ulmer as telling an officer shortly after the accident at 5:50 a.m. Sunday. Later in the day, she told another officer that she had a Long Island Iced Tea "and another drink. I don't remember when."

The statements attributed to Ulmer were in a document filed in First District Court in Hempstead. Prosecutors are required to give defense attorneys documents about what statements a defendant made that might be used at trial.

Ulmer was charged with drunken driving and vehicular manslaughter in the death of the passenger, Jennifer Alexis, 21, of Bayside, who was pronounced dead at the scene. Ulmer faces up to 7 years in jail if convicted.

The Alexis family could not be reached for comment Monday.

Police said Ulmer's 2000 BMW slammed into a parked tractor-trailer on North Centre Avenue near Meehan Lane in Rockville Centre about 5:50 a.m. The front passenger side of the car become lodged under the rear of the trailer.

The felony complaint against Ulmer said she "was in an intoxicated condition by alcohol," but it did not specify any outward signs of intoxication, such as bloodshot eyes or slurred speech.

At her arraignment, she pleaded not guilty and Judge Eric Bjorneby set bail at $20,000 bond or $10,000 cash. It had not been posted late Monday.

Defense attorney Fred Brewington told the judge his client worked at a department store and is in her final semester at Nassau Community College. Her next court appearance is Wednesday.

Prosecutors said they have not gotten the results of a blood alcohol test and they did not ask that Ulmer's license be suspended.

Ulmer had been taken to South Nassau Communities Hospital in Oceanside after the fatal crash, police said. Court papers said she was treated there for bumps and bruises.

With Chau Lam


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