DA: Woman pretended to be passenger in deadly Rehoboth crash

REHOBOTH, Mass. (WPRI) — A 27-year-old Pawtucket woman has been sentenced to jail time in a deadly crash from last year after initially telling police she wasn’t the driver, the Bristol County District Attorney’s Office said.

The DA’s office said Zeyra Martinez will serve 18 months at the Bristol House of Corrections after pleading guilty to causing the crash that killed her friend, Emerizialina Moreira.

According to the DA, Martinez was driving her father’s car on Route 195 in Rehoboth just before 2 a.m. on January 16, 2021 when she lost control of the vehicle. Martinez’s car rolled and her passenger, Moreira, was ejected from the car.

When police arrived on scene, Martinez was in the passenger’s seat and told an officer that Moreira, 25, had been driving. According to the DA’s office, an investigation later revealed Martinez was the driver.

At the scene, police smelled alcohol on Martinez and observed she was disoriented. Both Martinez and Moreira, also of Pawtucket, were taken to Rhode Island Hospital following the crash. Martinez’s blood alcohol levels were at .21.

Police initially reported Martinez was not the driver of the vehicle.

The DA’s office said Martinez had been celebrating her birthday with Moreira and other friends. After celebrating at friends’ houses in Rhode Island, Martinez and Moreira drove Martinez’s boyfriend to Fall River.

Both women were returning to Rhode Island when the crash happened.

Martinez later admitted to the victim’s sister and other friends that she was the driver of the vehicle at the time of the crash, according to the DA. Martinez also told her insurance company she was the driver.

Moreira was put on life support following the crash and pronounced dead on January 20, 2021.

“The victim’s family wanted to see the defendant take responsibility for the crash,” the DA’s office said in a news release.

Martinez pleaded guilty to an indictment charging her with motor vehicle homicide while operating under the influence. Martinez was sentenced to two-and-a-half years in jail with 18 months to serve.