BROCKTON, Mass. (WHDH) – A Pembroke woman pleaded not guilty Wednesday to motor vehicle homicide charges after police said she caused a crash involving an SUV and dump truck in Brockton that killed a 58-year-old Bridgewater woman.
The crash happened Tuesday at around 2 p.m. near North Quincy Street when police said an Audi traveling north rear-ended an SUV driven by Deborah Combra. Police said her SUV swerved into the southbound lane, hitting a dump truck head-on. The dump truck then rolled over.
Plymouth County District Attorney Tim Cruz said the truck, carrying 22 tons of dirt, landed 6 inches from a house.
“I wish I could turn the clock back and have her back,” said Combra’s husband, Manny Combra. He said they met when they were teenagers and had just celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary last month. The couple had two sons, one of whom was a police officer in Whitman. Combra worked for the Department of Mental Health in Brockton and was coming back from her lunch break when the crash happened.
Police said the woman behind the wheel of the Audi, 33-year-old Danielle Mastro, got out of the car and walked away from the scene. Mastro was found shortly after and charged by police.
Prosecutors said Mastro was on the phone with her drug dealer and drinking alcohol when she crashed into the SUV. Mastro allegedly left the scene in an effort to score $50 worth of heroin.
“She stated that she was calling and texting her drug dealer. She stated that she was ‘dope-sick’ and that she was trying to buy narcotics,” prosecutor Dan Jimenez told the court.
Jiminez said Mastro admitted to drinking vodka and at least six nips of alcohol before getting on the phone.
Mastro’s attorney Alison King said she had been clean for “a period of time” but that she has since relapsed and is now “struggling.”
Chief Scott D. Benton of the Whitman Police Department said Combra was the mother of auxiliary officer Michael Combra.
“On behalf of the Whitman Police Department and the entire community of Whitman, I offer my sincere condolences to Officer Combra and his family during this extremely difficult time,” said Benton. “Earlier this evening, I notified the department about what has occurred, and I have asked the members of our department to please keep Officer Combra and his family in their thoughts and prayers.”
Officials said Mastro was driving on a suspended license. Her mother allegedly called police earlier the same day after she left with the car because she did not want to be liable for her daughter driving.
Mastro was ordered held on $50,000 bail. She is due back in court at a later date.
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