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Cops: Drunken driver held on charges of fatally hitting bicyclist in Carle Place, leaving scene

Melissa A. McKiski, 22, of Venice, Fla., was

Melissa A. McKiski, 22, of Venice, Fla., was arrested on Thursday, Oct. 1, 2015, and charged with vehicular manslaughter, driving while intoxicated and leaving the scene of a fatality, police said. Credit: NCPD

A Hicksville native was driving drunk early Thursday when she fatally struck a bicyclist in Carle Place and then left the scene, authorities said.

Melissa A. McKiski, 22, who has lived in Venice, Florida, for the past few years while attending college but grew up in Hicksville, did not appear to enter a plea during her arraignment Thursday afternoon in First District Court in Hempstead on charges of second-degree vehicular manslaughter, driving while intoxicated and leaving the scene of a fatality.

Nassau District Court Judge Paul Meli ordered McKiski held on $50,000 cash bail or bond and suspended her ability to drive in New York. She also was cited for operating a vehicle without insurance and disobeying a traffic control device, according to court records.

McKiski, who has a Florida driver's license, was driving west in a blue 2007 Hyundai Santa Fe on Old Country Road about 12:30 a.m. when she hit Charles Velasquez, 22, who was riding his bicycle east in the westbound lane along the curb, police said.

Velasquez, of Bellerose, Queens, was pronounced dead at 4:32 a.m. at Winthrop-University Hospital, police said. Velasquez's family could not be reached for comment Thursday.

McKiski was arrested a short time after the accident at Herricks Road and Helen Road in Mineola -- about 2 1/2 miles from the scene, authorities said.

Nassau Assistant District Attorney Katie Zizza asked for $200,000 bond and said McKiski "refused to submit to a chemical test" and authorities had to get a warrant from a judge to obtain a blood sample -- which the prosecutor called "behavior indicative of a flight risk."

Zizza did not say in court what McKiski's blood alcohol level was and a district attorney's spokesman said he could not comment. Velasquez was "thrown from his bike, causing him to sustain severe head injuries," which caused his death, Zizza said.

McKiski's Legal Aid Society attorney said her client is a deli manager and a Farmingdale High School graduate. "This is the first time she's ever been in this situation," she told the judge.

With Gary Dymski

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