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Death Toll Now Five In Crash That Killed Cuomo Aide

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said 29-year-old Scott Martella, pictured above, was "a dedicated, beloved public servant who worked day in and day out to improve the lives of his fellow New Yorkers,"
Gov. Andrew Cuomo said 29-year-old Scott Martella, pictured above, was "a dedicated, beloved public servant who worked day in and day out to improve the lives of his fellow New Yorkers," Photo Credit: LinkedIn

This story has been updated.

A former aide to Gov. Andrew Cuomo was among five people killed in a multi-car crash on the Long Island Expressway in Manorville Sunday morning.

Scott Martella, 29, had served as Cuomo's Suffolk County representative from from 2011 to 2015 before being named communications director for Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone.

Martella's fiancée was transported to a local hospital with non-life threatening injuries, Suffolk County Police said. The two had been dating since they were high school students in Smithtown.

Also killed in the crash, which led to an hours-long closure of the LIE in both directions at eastbound Exit 68 and westbound Exit 69, were 26-year-old Carmelo Pinales of Hicksville and his sister Patricia Pinales, 27, of Westbury. Carmelo’s 10-year-old son, Christopher, who was airlifted in critical condition to Stony Brook University Hospital, later died. Also killed was an 81-year-old man from Westhampton.

At about 9:30 a.m., Carmelo Pinales lost control of a Subaru Outback as it was traveling eastbound before it went airborne, careening across a grass center divider and striking a BMW, driven by the Westhampton man, and a Honda being driven by Martella, according to Suffolk County Police. Detectives are investigating reports that Pinales was traveling at a high rate of speed, police said.

"Scott was a dedicated, beloved public servant who worked day in and day out to improve the lives of his fellow New Yorkers," Cuomo said in a statement. "Scott was always full of big ideas to help solve the toughest challenges of the day, and he was deeply respected for his strong work ethic, candor and fighting spirit."

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