Questions surround alleged DWI cop arrest

September 30, 2009 3:26:30 PM PDT
Relatives have serious questions nearly four full-days after Vionique Valnord was struck and killed on Avenue N by an off-duty New York City police officer accused of driving drunk. Today Mayor Bloomberg confirmed that an investigation is now underway into a possible cover-up. "It's a tragedy that deserves the closest of scrutiny and if it's true, the allegations of a DWI hit and a cover-up are reprehensible," said the mayor.

Mayor Bloomberg is issuing strong words against the NYPD officers who arrested fellow officer Andrew Kelly. He was allegedly drunk when he killed a woman last weekend.

The question: Did his arresting officers wait seven hours before administering a blood alcohol test and give Kelly water and gum to help mask the alcohol on his breath?

Officer Andrew Kelly was arrested at the scene, according to internal affairs officers for "?Exhibiting signs of intoxication, slurred speech, red watery eyes and the odor of alcohol on the defendant's breath."

Investigators noted those characteristics for at least the first two hours, but after Kelly refused a breathalyzer test, it took five more hours to draw his blood.

It was a delay that one NYPD insider told Eyewitness News was two to three times longer than it should have been.

Yesterday the city's police commissioner insisted the delay was largely irrelevant.

"There is a formula that is used to go back and make a determination as to what the state of intoxication would be at the time of the event," said Commissioner Ray Kelly.

But the officers blood had no trace of alcohol, indicating either that he had not been drinking at all, or the delay worked to his advantage.

The mayor today expressed full confidence in the department's internal investigation.

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