DA SINI: WOMAN INDICTED IN CONNECTION WITH DEATH OF EVELYN RODRIGUEZ
(CENTRAL ISLIP, N.Y.) – Suffolk County District Attorney Timothy D. Sini today announced the unsealing of an indictment in connection with the death of anti-gang activist Evelyn Rodriguez, 50, of Brentwood, on Sept. 14.
Annmarie Drago, 58, is charged with Criminally Negligent Homicide, an E felony; Criminal Mischief in the Fourth Degree, an A misdemeanor; and Petit Larceny, an A misdemeanor.
“Our goal in the Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office is to seek justice, and that’s what we’ve done here today: We’ve begun the process of justice,” District Attorney Sini said. “I want to thank my partners in the Suffolk County Police Department for working with my office in close collaboration to conduct an extremely comprehensive investigation. We promised from the outset that we would not rush to judgment, we would leave no stone unturned, and that is exactly what we did.”
Drago was arraigned on the indictment today in front of Suffolk County Acting Supreme Court Justice Fernando Camacho and was released on her own recognizance.
On Sept. 14, Rodriguez was on Ray Court in Brentwood setting up a memorial for her daughter, Kayla Cuevas, 16, and Nisa Mickens, 15, who were allegedly murdered by MS-13 gang members near the location approximately two years prior. The memorial included a table decorated with votive candles, glass vases containing flowers, balloons, and a large photograph of Kayla. Rodriguez had also placed a large floral arrangement on a wire stand next to the table.
At approximately 3:37 p.m., Drago, who was involved in the sale of a house on Ray Court, allegedly damaged several items placed at the memorial by throwing them into a garbage can, including candles, a tablecloth, flower bouquets and vases. She also allegedly popped balloons at the memorial before throwing them out.
The defendant then allegedly placed several items in the back of her 2016 Nissan Rogue, including the table, photograph and large floral arrangement, before leaving the scene.
At approximately 4:08 p.m., the defendant returned to Ray Court in the Nissan and became involved in a dispute with Rodriguez, who was on foot, over the memorial.
During the dispute, Drago abruptly accelerated the vehicle, striking Rodriguez with the front left tire and rear left tire of her vehicle.
Rodriguez was transported to Southside Hospital in Bay Shore where she was pronounced dead.
If convicted, Drago faces a maximum sentence of one and one-third to four years in prison.
Drago is due back in court on Jan. 15, 2018. She is represented by Stephen Kunken.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Marc Lindemann, of the Vehicular Crime Bureau.