Woman Charged with Vehicular Manslaughter in 2013 Hit and Run

A woman suspected of being involved in a 2013 fatal hit and run has now been charged in connection to the accident. Gabriele Ballowe, a 50-year-old former bar co-owner, is charged with vehicular manslaughter in the death of Barry Moss, as well as leaving the scene without reporting resulting in death and leaving the scene without reporting resulting in physical injury. WGRZ’s Mary Alice Demler spoke to attorney Barry Covert about the case and what role politics may have played in why Ballowe is being charged three years after the incident. The full story is available on the WGRZ website.

Could politics have played a role?

When WGRZ asked if politics may have played a role in the charges in this case, Mr. Covert responded, “Well, it’s the perception of politics because you have three years that have gone by here.” He went on to say that the public may wonder, “Why, suddenly, is there some change in the evidence or the facts that causes this new acting District Attorney to indict the case when the former District Attorney, who had it for a very long time, who claims to have thoroughly reviewed the evidence, he said there’s not enough? To the point that he has written an editorial where he defended himself strongly and said, ‘I’ve got all these problems with this case. I don’t even think it’s fair and just to bring it.’” Mr. Covert explained that the new acting District Attorney “may have new evidence that may well be justified but, from the public’s point of view, it certainly looks like politics could have played a role in this.”

Why is attention being drawn to this case?

WGRZ asked Mr. Covert if the acting Defense Attorney could be intentionally trying to draw attention to himself as well as to the case. Mr. Covert responded, “Well, I would never think that they would do it for that reason, but it’s the perception. The perception could be that perhaps that sort of played into it because of the new election that’s coming up and he’s running for it.” Mr. Covert also said that, although that may always be a criticism, “he made a decision and he said, ‘I’ve got newly discovered evidence.’ And he thinks that he’s justified in bringing these charges and he went to a judge and he got permission, so let’s see what plays out in the future.”

About Barry N. Covert

Mr. Covert is a senior partner in Lipsitz Green Scime Cambria’s Criminal Defense Trials and Appeals Practice Area. He is known for his aggressive representation of clients in the areas of New York State and federal criminal trials and appeals; driving while intoxicated; constitutional law, including First Amendment, civil rights actions, and federal False Claims Act; defending against allegations of scientific misconduct and fraud, research misconduct and fraud, plagiarism, and fabrication of evidence; and professional licensing defense. Mr. Covert frequently provides legal analysis for WGRZ and other media outlets.