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DA fuming, as 9-year-old injured by suspected drunk driver

Mike Desmond

An East Aurora woman faces charges of drunk driving, leading her to go off the road, hit a car and then hit and seriously injure a 9-year old who was riding a scooter on the sidewalk. Erie County District Attorney John Flynn is angry Erin Kuntz's license was not pulled when she appeared in village court Monday.

Kuntz faces a slew of felony and misdemeanor charges revolving around a DWI charge that is pending, since she refused a breathalyzer. The DA's office had to get a court order for a blood test and those results are not back yet.

Flynn said the condition of the unnamed 9-year-old is not yet known. When he learned Town Justice Jeffrey Markello had not pulled Kuntz's license as required by law, the DA called the village court and forced Kuntz's appearance Wednesday evening instead of the scheduled Aug. 7 court date.

"What is a big deal is the fact that her license was not taken right there at arraignment," Flynn said. "Whenever anyone refuses the breath test, automatically at arraignment, your license is immediately taken by the judge, by the court and, for whatever reason, her license was not taken."

Erie County District Attorney John Flynn explains his position on the case.

Flynn said it is the first time he ever made a call like this.

"The reason why I personally called was not because of the fact I wanted to make a call into the phone. I wanted to let the court know how adamant I was in getting her back to court, right away," Flynn said. "I told the court clerk that in a perfect world, I want her back like right now."

Flynn said he does not want Kuntz driving around with a license that is supposed to be "suspended pending prosecution."

"The unfortunate thing is that she's driving around tonight and tomorrow with a license that she shouldn't have," he said. "If she gets involved in an accident tonight or tomorrow, then you're really going to see my displeasure."

She is free on her own recognizance, because the DA said she is not considered a flight risk.

Mike Desmond is one of Western New York’s most experienced reporters, having spent nearly a half-century covering the region for newspapers, television stations and public radio. He has been with WBFO and its predecessor, WNED-AM, since 1988. As a reporter for WBFO, he has covered literally thousands of stories involving education, science, business, the environment and many other issues. Mike has been a long-time theater reviewer for a variety of publications and was formerly a part-time reporter for The New York Times.
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