Accused hit-and-run driver Blanca Contreras could have breakfast in Guatemala and dinner back in the states
, thanks to a federal judge who agreed to let her go home. She accelerated through a four-way intersection, ran down Coxall
, who was walking in a crosswalk, and then sped away
, according to authorities. Coxall died a week later, and Contreras was charged with motor vehicle homicide.
She could come back in ‘an hour’
ADIOS: Illegal alien Bianca Contreras, seen here at her Dec. 5 arraignment, volunteered to leave the country instead of stand trial on charges of negligent motor vehicle homicide.
An illegal alien who volunteered to be shipped out of the country instead of facing motor vehicle homicide charges in Waltham could come back to America “an hour” after she arrives home in Guatemala, according to a Boston immigration lawyer.
By Christine McConville
Friday, April 27, 2012 - Updated 1 hour ago
Accused hit-and-run driver Blanca Contreras, the mother of a 3-year-old boy born in the U.S., could have breakfast in her homeland and dinner back in the states, thanks to a federal judge who agreed to let her go home.
If Contreras had not volunteered to go, she would have likely been banned from returning to America for years, immigration experts told the Herald.
“If you leave with a voluntary departure, there’s nothing legally to stop you from coming back in an hour after you get home,” said Boston immigration lawyer Michael Greenberg. “And this isn’t a crazy, once-in-a lifetime kind of thing. I’ve had clients who’ve left the country with charges pending. You’re going to lose your bond, but some people don’t care about that.”
As the Herald reported yesterday, Boston immigration court judge Steven F. Day has agreed to let Contreras voluntarily depart the U.S., even though the Middlesex District Attorney’s Office has charged her with motor vehicle homicide, leaving the scene of an accident, operating a motor vehicle without a license and six other offenses, all stemming from the crash that killed Scott Coxall, 39, of Waltham.
Day’s move came after Contreras’ lawyer Gerard J. Walsh asked Day to allow her to leave voluntarily. The judge could not be reached for comment.
“The respondent has no other criminal record,” Walsh wrote, “she is a woman of good moral character. ... In my opinion, she and her United States citizen son have been punished enough.”
Federal records show Day could have ordered Contreras deported, a move that would have banned her from re-entering the country for at least 10 years.
A voluntary departure, Greenberg said, doesn’t carry those stipulations. “You can come right back,” he added.
But it comes with a risk. If an illegal alien has charges pending, Greenberg added, they can be arrested at the airport — if caught.
Authorities said Contreras entered the U.S. 11 years ago on a 90-day tourist visa. She’s been living in Massachusetts since 2002.
Police said she got in her cousin’s Nissan Pathfinder Nov. 23 and headed for a T.J. Maxx in Waltham. But when Contreras sideswiped a parked car, she decided to return home, police said. She accelerated through a four-way intersection, ran down Coxall, who was walking in a crosswalk, and then sped away, according to authorities. Coxall died a week later, and Contreras was charged with motor vehicle homicide.
She posted a $50,000 cash bond, and the federal government picked her up and began deportation proceedings. She remains locked up in Boston and is due to leave within weeks.