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New details released in deadly Irondequoit crash investigation

March 22, 2019 02:49 PM

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — A grand jury has indicted a Greece man in the case of the 87-year-old woman that was struck and killed in Irondequoit.

Vincent Mannillo, 62, was indicted on a criminally negligent homicide charge. He's accused of hitting and killing Joan Dierna last November. She was hit on Bayview Road and left lying there.

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Irondequoit Police Chief Richard Tantalo told reporters Thursday that this was an exhaustive and intensive investigation that involved multiple agencies. He also pointed to the community and the media coverage for helping to bring this investigation to a close.

The chief says witness accounts, as well as the use of surveillance video from neighbors, helped police come up with the vehicle in question. 

That along with DNA testing helped police identify the specific truck and the driver. Mannillo is accused of operating that truck knowing it was in disrepair. 

Prosecutors think the back of the truck came unhinged and struck Joan Dierna. Mannillo's attorney says he had no idea anything had occurred. 

Dierna was walking to her mailbox on the morning of Nov. 10 when she was struck by a large truck. 

The Dierna family operates a funeral home in the area and is well known. Irondequoit Supervisor Dave Seeley says he hopes this conclusion brings some closure for the family and the entire community.

"For those of you who know the Diernas, the famiy, for decades, has helped thousands of Irondequoit families and beyond through their time of grief and mourning as you know they operate Dierna Funeral Home on Culver Avenue, so when we learned of the death of Joan, the matriarch of that family, it really hit the community hard," said Seeley. 

"We certainly didn't know there was an accident...he's beside himself," said Joe Damelio, defense attorney. "There's been some name calling about him because he didn't come forward but he has a lawyer and his lawyer's duty is to protect his client. But that doesn't mean he doesn't feel sorry for this woman that she was struck. He's living with that." 

Mannillo is charged with a Class E felony. If found guilty, he could face a maximum of four years behind bars. 

A booking photo of Mannillo was not immediately available.

In a Tweet, Irondequoit Town Supervisor Dave Seeley calls the death of Dierna "tragic and heartbreaking."

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