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Sunday, March 4, 2012

Lawyer, Looking-For-Favors As Prosecutor, Pleads Guilty

Ex-Bronx prosecutor Jennifer Troiano pleads guilty in drunk-driving case
The New York Daily News by Corinne Lestch - March 2, 2012
Says she’s sorry & donates car to charity

Jennifer Troiano, the former Bronx prosecutor, who took a plea deal in her drunk-driving case.
A disgraced former Bronx prosecutor who tried to weasel out of her arrest pleaded guilty Friday to drunk driving. Ex-assistant district Attorney Jennifer Troiano, who was spared jail time, said she was “deeply sorry” for her actions. An intoxicated Troiano, 34, crashed her car on the Major Deegan Expressway in 2010 and then tried to use her law-enforcement connections to skirt arrest. “No foul, no foul. I didn’t do anything wrong,” she slurred to cops, according to court papers. Officers hauled her in despite her desperate pleas. She was charged with reckless driving, a count that was dropped on a technicality, and driving while intoxicated. “Today I accept responsibility for my actions of Aug. 26, 2010,” Troiano said in Bronx Supreme Court Friday. “It was my distinct honor to serve the people of Bronx County as an assistant district attorney. I am deeply sorry for what I have done and any harm I have caused others.” Under the terms of her plea-bargain agreement, Troiano has to pay a $750 fine plus about $400 in court fees and complete a drunk-driving prevention program. She also had her license revoked for six months and will have to install a device in her car ensuring that she drives sober. But that’s a moot point, said defense lawyer Steven Epstein, because Troiano donated her car to charity. “I can’t tell which charity, but she does a lot of volunteering with animal rights,” Epstein said after his client’s court appearance. Troiano declined to comment as she left Judge Robert Sackett’s courtroom wearing a big smile and a black skirt suit. The deal was hammered out by Epstein and two special prosecutors from the Manhattan DA’s office assigned to the case to avoid a conflict of interest. Troiano was also embroiled in two previous incidents — one in 2005 for crashing a vehicle upstate and the other in 2009 for allegedly driving drunk after leaving a Christmas party. She managed to avoid arrest both times after telling cops she was a prosecutor, sources said. The Bronx DA’s office was investigating cops for fixing tickets and arrests and the appearance of special treatment for Troiano was an embarrassment to prosecutors. Thanks to the plea deal, Troiano’s colleague, fellow prosecutor Amy Weiswasser, was spared the possible humiliation of having to testify against her friend at trial. Epstein would not comment on what Troiano, who was fired by Bronx District Attorney Robert Johnson on Jan. 13, would do next. “She's happy she can move ahead with her life,” he said. With Kevin Deutsch