Man who pleaded guilty to fatal West New York crash gets 5-year sentence

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A man who pleaded guilty to a fatal West New York crash in June was sentenced to five years in state prison earlier today, authorities said.

Fernando Batista. Photo courtesy of the Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office.

By John Heinis/Hudson County View

Hudson County Superior Court Judge Patrick Arre sentenced Fernando Batista, 25, of Jersey City (from North Bergen at the time of the incident), to five years in New Jersey State Prison for second-degree death by auto, Hudson County Prosecutor Esther Suarez revealed.

Batista was involved in the June 2019 collision that caused the death of a North Bergen woman who was a passenger in the vehicle he was driving in West New York.

The sentence is subject to the No Early Release Act and includes a consecutive 10 year driver’s license suspension pursuant to state statute.

Batista pled guilty to the offense on June 25th of this year.

On Tuesday, June 18th, 2019, shortly after 12:30 a.m., West New York police officers responded to the intersection of 60th Street and Jefferson Street on a report of a motor
vehicle collision.

Upon arrival, the responding officers found that two vehicles were involved in a collision.

The first vehicle, a 2002 Acura TL, was operated by Batista. He was transported by Emergency Medical Services to Palisades Medical Center where he was treated for non-life threatening injuries.

Meanwhile, the Acura contained two passengers, Alysa Matos, 20, from North Bergen, and a 22-year-old male from North Bergen. Both passengers were transported by EMS to Jersey City Medical Center.

The second vehicle was a 2004 Infiniti G35 operated by Richard Henao, age 26, of West New York. Henao was transported by EMS to Palisades Medical Center where he was treated for his injuries.

Additionally, the Infiniti contained a single passenger, a 26-year-old male from Clifton, who
sustained bodily injuries but refused medical treatment at the scene of the collision.

On Sunday, June 23rd, 2019, Matos was pronounced dead at Jersey City Medical Center.

The Regional Medical Examiner’s Office determined the cause of death to be blunt impact injuries of the head.

The investigation by the Regional Collision Investigation Unit determined that the Acura, driven by Batista, was traveling west on 60th Street and failed to observe the red traffic signal when it collided with the Infiniti as it traveled north on Jefferson Street.

It was also determined by the New Jersey State Police forensic laboratory that Batista had THC/Marijuana in his system at the time of the collision.

The state was represented in this case by Assistant Prosecutor Andrew Baginski of the Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office Homicide Unit.