A Lockport city resident has been charged with vehicular manslaughter in connection with the Nov. 20 death of Melissa Maras in Pendleton.
According to the Niagara County Sheriff’s Office, Joshua M. Kalenda, 29, drove the vehicle that crashed into Maras’ vehicle on Campbell Boulevard, in front of the Wendelville Volunteer Fire Company hall, about 4:40 p.m. Nov. 20.
This week, Kalenda was arraigned on one count of second-degree vehicular manslaughter, two counts of driving while ability impaired, one count of DWAI by the combined influence of drugs and one count of failure to keep right. Arraignment was by Niagara Falls City Court Judge Danielle Restaino in centralized arraignment court at the sheriff’s office.
Investigation showed Kalenda’s southbound vehicle veered onto the road shoulder on the 7300 block of Campbell Boulevard, was corrected and then crossed the center line and struck Maras’ northbound vehicle.
Maras was pronounced dead at the scene. Kalenda was transported by Mercy Flight to Erie County Medical Center for treatment of non-life threatening injuries.
Kalenda turned himself in at the sheriff’s office on Tuesday, after learning law enforcement had the test results on the level of drugs in his system after the collision, according to Sheriff Michael Filicetti.
Maras, 43, a Lockport native, resided in Williamsville, was a Registered Nurse and visiting nurse for Catholic Health Systems and had three children.