An expert witness in the Patterson, New York DWI trial of Raymond Knox testified this week that Knox’s employee, Sandra Longchamps, was served with 12-14 drinks while she was at The Paddock Tavern on Super Bowl Sunday last February 4th. Southeast, New York prosecutors charge that as a result of Ms. Longchamps’ intoxication, she drove her Ford Explorer on Route 22 head on into a minivan operated by 34 year old Kirsten Henry, who was driving with her three children and husband in the car. Both women were killed in the car accident, but Ms. Henry’s three minor children ranging in age from 2 to 7 survived, as did her husband.
Mr. Knox was charged with two misdemeanors, allowing Ms. Longchamps to be served with alcohol while she was visibly intoxicated, and allowing her to drink while knowing that she “habitually drank too much.” Mr. Knox pleaded not guilty in July.
There was very interesting testimony by Elizabeth Spratt, director of toxicology for the Westchester County Department of Laboratories and Research, based on an analysis of autopsy and toxicology reports. Spratt testified that she calculated that Longchamps had 12 drinks using the Widmark Factor, a standard scientific formula that assesses the victim’s weight at autopsy (130 lbs.) and her blood alcohol content, which at 0.345 percent was more than 4 times the legal limit for driving while intoxicated in New York.
The laboratory also tested fluid from Ms. Longchamps’ eyes, known as vitreous, which revealed that her blood alcohol level was 0.402 percent, indicating that she had approximately 14.2 drinks that day.