NJ Investigating Fatal Menendez Crash — Report
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The 2018 fatal accident involving the wife of embattled U.S. Sen. Bob Menendez is getting another look by New Jersey's Attorney General, according to a report.
Details of the accident were revealed in the current indictment for bribery and corruption served on Menendez and his wife Nadine Arslanian.
Mrs. Menendez struck and killed 49-year-old Richard Koop as he was crossing the street. Police said she was not at fault because he was jaywalking.
However, questions have arisen about whether Arslanian was given preferential treatment by officers at the scene.
According to NBC4, investigators from the New Jersey Office of Public Integrity & Accountability (OPIA) arrived at Bogota Police headquarters on Thursday and began asking questions.
Arslanian was allowed to leave the scene and was never subjected to drug and/or alcohol testing the night of the crash. She was not charged in the accident.
Attorney General Matt Platkin's office would not confirm or deny an investigation has begun.
Was there a cover-up?
The only reason anyone now knows about the accident is because it was included in the corruption indictment.
Prosecutors say Menendez accepted the bribe of a new Mercedes to replace the car that was damaged in his wife's accident.
In exchange, they allege Menendez agreed to help the man who paid for the car, businessman Jose Uribe.
Uribe was facing criminal charges connected to his business dealings.
Menendez, prosecutors say, called then Attorney General Gubir Greywal's office to try and get them to go easy on Uribe.
Irony? Greywal created the division now looking into the accident
The same year Menendez's wife hit and killed a man in Bogota, 2018, Attorney General Greywal created the Office of Public Integrity and Accountability to combat corruption and strengthen public confidence in government institutions.
Greywal created OPIA in September. The fatal accident happened in December.
OPIA is chartered to investigate both government corruption, and the actions of law enforcement.
Staffed by both criminal prosecutors and trained investigators, they also review every use of force incident by a police officer in New Jersey.
They can also investigate actions taken by police in the course of any investigation.
The office has the power to bring charges and prosecute any cases they deem have violated law and public standards.
Menendez says the accident was a 'tragedy'
Sen. Menendez has not commented on any details of the incident.
He was followed by reporters in Washington on Thursday. After again vowing that he would not resign, he was asked about his wife's accident.
"That was a tragic accident," Menendez said, "Obviously, we think of the family."
The dead man's family believes otherwise. They have claimed that not only did Arslanian not provide any aid to Mr. Pool as he lay dying on the street, neither she nor Menendez ever reached out with sympathies or to offer help.
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