Medical personnel had warned a Hempstead man with a history of seizures not to drive before he suffered an apparent medical emergency in a crash that killed his companion and their son, Nassau prosecutors said Monday after his arraignment on manslaughter charges.
Renen Vides, 29, faces two counts of second-degree manslaughter, second-degree reckless endangerment and reckless driving charges stemming from the Sept. 29, 2013, crash in Westbury, according to acting Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas.
Acting Supreme Court Justice Philip Grella set Vides' bail at $250,000 bond or cash at his arraignment in Mineola where his attorney entered a not-guilty plea. Vides' relatives could not be reached for comment late Monday. His attorney, Robert Schalk, would not comment on whether Vides had taken his medication before the crash but said prosecutors must prove that he didn't, causing him to be reckless.
Vides "had a history of seizures and was told by medical personnel that he could not safely drive a car and that he must take anti-seizure medication," Singas said in news release. Vides had seizures in the months before the crash and was not taking prescribed medication, prosecutors said.
On the day of the crash, Vides was driving east on Old Country Road, in front of The Source Mall, authorities said.
His partner Martha Candida Hernandez Majano, 27, of Uniondale, was in the front passenger seat and the couple's son, Renen Vides Jr., 4, was in a child seat.
Nassau police said Vides "veered abruptly to the right, mounted the curb and struck a tree." Vides had said he felt chest pain and lost consciousness before the crash and awoke when medical personnel arrived, prosecutors said.
"In spite of repeated warnings and repeated seizures, the defendant recklessly drove anyway, risking everyone in his path and killing his 4-year-old son and common-law wife," Singas said. Vides faces a maximum of 5 to 15 years in prison if convicted of manslaughter. His next court date is Sept. 2.
Garden City police arrested Vides Friday after officers saw him driving a 2011 Nissan Sentra with no front plates on Clinton Street, Nassau police said.
An investigation found that Vides had an open arrest warrant for a March 30 indictment on charges in the crash.