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Man changes plea in girlfriend’s truck death

A Pittsford man accused of hitting his girlfriend with his pickup truck has changed his plea in her death.

Anthony J. Reynolds, 50, pleaded guilty on Tuesday to leaving the scene of an accident with death resulting and driving with a suspended license, according to his lawyer, Chris Montgomery. He also pleaded no contest to negligent operation, a misdemeanor, he said.

Police said Reynolds and Melanie Rooney, 31, had gotten into an argument and he hit her with his truck as he drove off from her Proctor home in May 2019. He told police that he wasn’t aware he had hit her until he returned to the home for his cellphone.

“It is clear that Mr. Reynolds did not know Ms. Rooney was behind his vehicle when he left her residence,” Montgomery said by email.

When Reynolds checked her pulse and realized she wasn’t breathing he said “he panicked and left the area,” the police affidavit said, according to the Rutland Herald.

Reynolds originally pleaded not guilty. The state is dismissing the manslaughter and aggravated domestic assault charges, and amended the gross negligent operation to negligent operation, Montgomery said.

“We believe the plea agreement properly reflects the events of that evening,” he said by email.

A document filed with the court and signed by Reynolds, said he had been negligent because he was “tired from a long day” and had been drinking and arguing with Rooney, the newspaper reported.

As part of the plea deal, the state has restricted itself to seeking a sentence of no more than six to 10 years to serve.

Maine might put limits on size of all-terrain vehicles

Lawmakers might put limits on the size of all-terrain vehicles.

ATV riding is a popular activity in Maine, which has thousands of miles of trails. In recent years, larger ATVs sometimes called “side-by-side ATVs” have grown in popularity.

Republican Rep. Tim Theriault of China has proposed size and weight limits for the vehicles. The bill comes as some in the state have voiced concerns that the large ATVs contribute to erosion on the state’s expansive trail network.

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The proposal would also up the annual ATV registration fee by $25, the Portland Press Herald reported.

The Maine Legislature was moving toward approval of the restrictions last year when it adjourned early because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The “side-by-side” ATVs seat two to six passengers and can weigh well up over a ton. The proposal before lawmakers would limit the size of the ATVs to 2,000 pounds.

New Yorkers released from prison could vote under bill

All individuals released on parole could vote in New York under a bill that passed the Assembly on Wednesday and is now on its way to the governor.

The legislation passed the Senate last month, and will next head to the desk of Gov. Andrew Cuomo. The governor has 10 days to sign or veto a bill once it hits his desk before it becomes law.

Currently, people who are released on parole and under community supervision for felonies have to wait months or years to vote until they’ve been discharged from parole or reached the end of supervision.

That can mean a wait as long as five to 10 years, according to bill supporters. Two states — Vermont and Maine — don’t restrict the voting rights of people with felonies, while 14 states allow people on community supervision to vote.

“It is the goal of this legislation to allow individuals who have paid the most significant portion of their debt to society to be provided with a rehabilitative tool of the highest order — the rational reinstatement of their right to vote,” according to a summary of the bill.

More than than 30,000 New Yorkers were barred from voting at any time under the state law until 2018, according to advocacy group VOCAL-NY.

That year, Cuomo began using his pardon power to restore voting rights of people barred from voting under a 2018 executive order he signed.

Supporters say the bill removes any need for that process by restoring the right to vote for all people released from prison, and protects voting rights in case a future governor ends the practice.

— The Associated Press


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