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Model's Nephew Had Twice Legal Alcohol Limit Before Fatal Bus Crash: DA

By Ben Fractenberg | February 14, 2014 9:35am
 Dominic Whilby was charged with vehicular homicide for stealing a truck early Wednesday morning and then slamming into a city bus, killing its driver, prosecutors say.
Dominic Whilby Arraignment
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NEW YORK — The drunken nephew of model Tyson Beckford had more than twice the legal limit of alcohol in his blood when he got behind the wheel of a stolen truck and slammed into an MTA bus, killing its driver, prosecutors said.

Domonic Whilby, 22, of Georgia, reportedly spent the night partying with Beckford and other models at clubs including the Dream Downtown at 355 West 16th St. before wandering down to the hotel's loading dock at 5:20 a.m. and stealing an Isuzu delivery truck, according to the criminal complaint. His blood alcohol level at the time was a .18, more than twice the legal limit of .08, prosecutors said.

Whilby nearly slammed the stolen truck into the Isuzu's shocked driver, then plowed into the wall of the loading dock and ripped off the truck's side door, prosecutors said. Whilby kept driving, plowing into another truck and a parked cab on West 16th Street before blowing through a red light at Eighth Avenue, prosecutors said.

Whilby then slammed into an M14 bus at 14th and Eighth Avenue, sending driver William Pena, 49, flying through the front windshield, prosecutors said. Pena died at the scene, prosecutors said.

Whilby was arraigned in Manhattan Criminal Court Thursday night on charges of vehicular homicide, assault, manslaughter, vehicular manslaughter and driving while intoxicated, prosecutors said. He was ordered held without bail and is due back in court on Feb. 18.

Pena's family set up a fundraising page on GoGetFunding for the city driver.

"William Pena was a 49 year old humble, funny and loved MTA driver who worked very hard in order to provide for his family," the page reads. "His priority in life was to pay off [his] mortgage and save for college for his only daughter, Gabriela 17, currently in her senior year of high school."

Pena was thrown from his seat during the collision and ended up underneath the bus. He died at the scene.

His grieving sister told DNAinfo New York that Pena was close with his only daughter

"They were inseparable," Araseli Pena said hours after the crash. "I don't know how she is going to handle this."

Three other passengers on the bus were injured in the collision.

Whilby is being held without bail and is due back in court Tuesday.