Barre, VT – Mayumi L. Wagstaff-Blaise, 33, of Barre, was sentenced on Tuesday in Washington County criminal court to 15 days of work crew and probation for hitting and seriously injuring a tow-truck driver with her vehicle in November 2021 and then fleeing to New York.
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Wagstaff-Blaise pleaded guilty to a felony count of leaving the scene of a crash resulting in serious injury and a misdemeanor count of negligent operation resulting in serious injury. She was sentenced to one to two years in prison, all suspended except for 15 days of work crew on the misdemeanor conviction. She was also given a five-year deferred sentence on the felony conviction. If she successfully completes five years of probation, the conviction could be removed from her record.
According to court records, on November 15, 2021, Wagstaff-Blaise was driving her vehicle when she hit a tow-truck driver who was standing on the side of the road. The tow-truck driver, Guy Martin, suffered serious injuries and was taken to the hospital. Wagstaff-Blaise fled the scene of the accident and drove to New York. She was arrested in New York a few days later.
As part of her sentence, Wagstaff-Blaise was also ordered to pay restitution to the victim, complete a victim impact panel, and attend a substance abuse treatment program.
She was also ordered to not drive without a valid license and to not consume alcohol or drugs while on probation.
Background: On November 21, 2021, at about 2027 hrs, Guy Martin of North Main Service was struck by a 2013 black Volkswagon Tiguan of unknown registration. The accident happened on VT State Route 12 in Northfield, as reported by Compass Vermont.
Martin was loading a vehicle onto a flatbed wrecker displaying its emergency lights. Martin was also wearing his reflective emergency worker clothing when he was struck.
The vehicle operator failed to stop and render aid and fled the scene without reporting the incident to the police. As a result, Martin sustained severe injuries and was brought to the UVM Medical Center for treatment.
The vehicle was later identified as belonging to Wagstaff-Blaise.
In early December, an anonymous tip led the Northfield Police Department to Moriah, New York, where Northfield police discovered a Black Volkswagen Tiguan matching the description of the vehicle that struck Martin. The Tiguan had damage consistent with the crash and was hidden in a garage.
The Times-Argus reported that Martin "reportedly suffered a bruised colon, broken ribs, a fractured elbow, an injured liver and nerve damage in his shoulder from the crash."
Martin's attorney, Jon Valsangiacomo, "said his client suffered permanent injuries as a result of this crash. He said doctors have told the victim he likely won’t ever be able to return to work as a tow-truck driver, something he’s done for over 40 years, because of the injuries he suffered.
“He’s still out of work,” Valsangiacomo said. “They’re telling him he’s got to be retrained for something else,” according to the article.