Men In Saturday Crash Were In Country Illegally
The men involved in Saturday night's crash in the Town of Ellisburg were apparently in the country illegally, according to a Jefferson County sheriff's detective.
Jefferson County Sheriff's deputies say 33 year old Rafael Espinoza of Quintana Roo, Mexico, died when the pickup truck he was in flipped over several times after the driver lost control on the Lake Road around 9:30 p.m.
Deputies say the driver, Amado Hernandez-Alvarado, 23, of Ellisburg, was charged with second degree manslaughter, driving while intoxicated, unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle and speed not reasonable and prudent.
Hernandez-Alvarado was taken to Samaritan Medical Center for treatment.
He was arraigned in Ellisburg town court and ordered held in county jail on $50,000 bail.
Undersheriff Andrew Neff told 7 News U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement is involved in the investigation, and that the men were farm workers.
A third man, not involved with the crash, was turned over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement Saturday night.
Detective Dave Pustizzi told 7 News the men had submitted working papers to Sheland Farms, which is on Mixer Road in Ellisburg, but that the papers used the men's 'working names,' and not their real identities.
The owner of the farm, Doug Shelmidine, had no comment when reached by 7 News Monday.
Pustizzi said Immigration and Customs plans to send someone to interview Hernandez-Alvarado.
It's not clear what, if any, additional action might be taken in connection with the men being illegal workers.
In 2011, Immigration and Customs raided Butterville Farms in Henderson after a worker died in an accident. (Our story here.)
Wednesday, June 19, 2013, Watertown, NY
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