(SUFFOLK COUNTY, N.Y.) – Suffolk County District Attorney Raymond A. Tierney today announced Diane Juergens pled guilty to multiple counts of driving while intoxicated.
“This defendant’s actions put the lives of many people and children at risk,” said Tierney. “We are satisfied knowing that she has faced justice and is no longer behind the wheel.”
According to court documents, on July 13, 2021, Juergens, 62, the driver of a school bus transporting children to and from camp arrived at the Boy Scout Camp in Baiting Hollow to transport campers to their home destinations at the end of the day. Ten cub scouts, all under the age of 11 had boarded the bus, together with their camp counselor.
During the trip, Juergens attempted to make a U-turn on Sound Avenue. While backing the bus up, she reversed into a stone pillar. Juergens also hit a GMC Yukon on Sound Avenue. Juergens failed to stop and exchange her name, address, license and insurance information with the owners of the properties she damaged. Juergens left both scenes and then returned to the original location where she had picked up the cub scouts in Baiting Hollow.
Police responded and during an officer’s interaction with the defendant, he noted that the defendant had bloodshot, glassy eyes, slurred speech, was unsteady on her feet and had an odor of an alcoholic beverage emanating from her breath. Juergens was arrested and transported to the Riverhead Police Department where she consented to a blood test. The result was a .30% BAC.
Juergens pled guilty to the following charges:
1 count of Aggravated Driving While Intoxicated Per Se (Class D Felony);
20 counts of Aggravated Driving While Intoxicated with a Child (Class E Felony);
1 count of Driving While Intoxicated Per Se (Class E Felony);
1 count of Driving While Intoxicated (Class E Felony);
1 count of Aggravated Driving While Intoxicated Per Se (Unclassified Misdemeanor);
1 count of Driving While Intoxicated Per Se (Unclassified Misdemeanor);
1 count of Driving While Intoxicated (Unclassified Misdemeanor);
10 counts of Endangering the Welfare of a Child (Class A Misdemeanor);
2 counts of Leaving the Scene of an Incident without Reporting (Traffic Infraction).
This case was heard before Suffolk Supreme Court Justice Stephen L. Braslow. Juergens is due back in court for sentencing on June 14. This case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Maria Troulakis of the Major Crime Bureau.
Criminal complaints and indictments are merely accusatory instruments.
Defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty. No one is above the law.
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