A woman was sentenced Tuesday to three to nine years in prison for driving while high on drugs when she struck and killed a 69-year-old retired doctor who was mowing her front lawn in Hempstead.
Kayla Gerdes pleaded guilty at Nassau County court in April to second-degree manslaughter, second-degree vehicular manslaughter, operating a motor vehicle while impaired by drugs, reckless endangerment, reckless driving, criminal possession of a controlled substance, conspiracy and a slew of other charges.
Prosecutors said the 20-year-old Freeport woman was driving a van southbound on Cathedral Avenue when she swerved onto the front lawn of a residence, striking and killing Dr. Rebecca Twine-Wright on the morning of on April 20, 2010.
Twine-Wright was pinned underneath the front axle of the van and up against the foundation of her home.
Investigators had found Gerdes to be in possession of a stolen prescription pad, 22 Oxycodone pills and 29 Xanax pills.
The Baldwin pharmacist who sold Gerdes the pills, Lutful Chowdhury, has since been twice arrested and charged with illegally filling prescriptions for painkillers.