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Head-on crash in Bethel leads to felony arrest

By Fred Stabbert III
Posted 9/14/21

BETHEL – A head-on crash at 3:06 p.m. Saturday afternoon led to four injured and a felony arrest of one driver, who was allegedly impaired by drugs, according to New York State …

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Head-on crash in Bethel leads to felony arrest

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BETHEL – A head-on crash at 3:06 p.m. Saturday afternoon led to four injured and a felony arrest of one driver, who was allegedly impaired by drugs, according to New York State Police.

According to police, the accident occurred when Kassandra Demonda, 40, of Bethel, was driving west in a 2005 Chevrolet Trailblazer when she crossed the double yellow line and struck a 2019 Volkswagen heading east, police said.

The operator of the Volks­wagen, Holly Rubin, 38, of Woodcliff, NJ, was injured and transported to Garnet Medical Center in Middletown  with non-life-threatening injuries. She was traveling with two minors, ages 5 and 8. The 8-year-old was transported to Westchester Medical center via helicopter in serious condition, police said.

The violent collision occurred on State Route 17B between Creamery Rd. and Gale Rd., and sent both vehicles flying out of control, with the Trailblazer ending up sideways in the westbound land and the Volkswagon pointing west in the eastbound ditch.

Further investigation revealed that Demonda was impaired by drugs and she was subsequently arrested. She was charged with Vehicular Assault, 1st degree, a felony, and Driving While Ability Impaired by Drugs, police said.

She was arraigned in the Town of Mamakating Court and remanded to Sullivan County Jail in lieu of $200,000 cash, $300,000 bond or $500,000 secured bond.

In addition to the New York State Police other responders included the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office, Smallwood-Mongaup Valley Fire Dept., Bethel EMS, Mobile Medic, Hatzolah ambulance and the Monticello Fire Dept., who helped secure the Collins Softball Field for the airlift rescue.

Route 17B was closed for approximately 50 minutes as rescue personnel tended to the victims, directed traffic on a detour, removed the vehicles and cleaned the road of debris.

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