Riverhead mom charged under Leandra’s DWI law

05/13/2010 12:00 AM |

A Riverhead woman was arrested in Water Mill last week after her sedan rear-ended another car while she was allegedly driving drunk with her 4-year-old child in the car, authorities said, a felony under Leandra’s Law.

Helen Karwowski, 39, of Riverhead was traveling west on Montauk Highway last Wednesday about 1:30 p.m. when her 2009 Honda hit a car that was stopped in the same lane.

Police said the child had been secured in a car seat in the back of the car and was not reported to have been injured. Ms. Karwowski was taken by ambulance to Southampton Hospital, where she was treated for undisclosed injuries and released.

She was charged with endangering the welfare of a child and aggravated DWI, a felony under Leandra’s Law, which took effect in December, and mandates a felony DWI charge if an adult has a child 15 years of age or younger in the vehicle.

Ms. Karwowski was released from Suffolk County Jail after posting $1,500 bail last Thursday. Ms. Karwowski’s attorney did not return calls seeking comment.