Driver pleads not guilty one year after Mass. Ave. fatal

Cambridge District Court logoA 68-year-old Arlington driver accepted a not-guilty plea at his arraignment in the death of a 77-year-old Cambridge woman one year to the day after the collision at Mass. Ave. and Orvis Road in East Arlington.

Judge Roanne Sragow entered the plea for Paul S. Giragosian, charged with motor-vehicular homicide by negligent operation About 10 p.m. Dec. 19, 2013, Elba Ortiz-Delgado, known as "Lucy," of North Cambridge, was pushing a cart in a crosswalk near Sabatino's and was struck by a car driven by Giragosian. The victim was taken to Massachusetts General Hospital, where she later died.

Giragosian, appearing in Cambridge District Court in Medford for the arraignment on Friday, Dec. 19, was ordered to attend a pretrial hearing set for Wednesday, Feb. 11.

The judge ordered Giragosian to turn in his driver's license after it had been restored in error.

The arraignment was a formality so that final documents in the case can be turned over to the court.

In the courtroom was Juliet Blackett, a friend of Ortiz-Delgado who lives in North Cambridge. She vowed to continue following the court case in person.

Because the victim has no family, Blackett arranged for cremation at her own expense earlier this year. She said her attempts to locate her family here and in Puerto Rico were not fruitful.

Blackett told YourArlington in November: "I now understand that in addition to the Arlington police investigation, the State Police were involved since Mass. Ave. is a state road. I also understand that for some reason the DA’s office had to obtain a full autopsy report on my friend in addition to the actual death certificate.

"It has been very frustrating to wait nearly a full year since my friend’s death for charges to brought, but I am glad there is now a complete picture and analysis of what occurred" that night.

At the time, Giragosian was cited for operating without a license and failure to yield to a pedestrian at a crosswalk, but the case remained under investigation for months.

The investigation included a State Police Collision Analysis and Reconstruction Section report, which came back in October. The report, combined with the Arlington Police Department investigation, resulted in the allegations against Giragosian.

Arlington police investigators worked with the office of Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan to investigate and ultimately charge Giragosian with motor-vehicular homicide.

"A 77-year-old woman was tragically killed as she tried to use the crosswalk to get safely across the street," District Attorney Ryan said in a news release. "People need to be mindful of their obligations to pedestrians who are using crosswalks."

The prosecutor assigned to this case is Assistant District Attorney Radu Brestyan. Lonni Scott is the victim witness advocate.

Ortiz-Delgado's ashes have not been interred. Blackett said she decided to keep them until the case involving Giragosian is decided.

Blackett plans to contribute statement on behalf of Ortiz-Delgado at some point in the legal process.

The case was heard after 35 cases were announced and following a recess.


Background

Dec. 21, 2013: Further charge possible in death at long Mass. Ave. crosswalk
Jan. 8, 2014: Lucy: ‘She was no longer with us in this world’
Feb. 25, 2014: Lucy: A friend seeks a proper end
July 9, 2014: No-contest plea to lesser charge in Mass. Ave. death

Nov. 4, 2014: Arlington man faces motor-vehicular homicide charges in '13 Mass. Ave. case


This story was published Friday, Dec. 19, 2014.

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