2006-04-14 / Front Page

'DWI' Husband Charged In Fatal Crash

By Brian Magoolaghan

A Belle Harbor man who was allegedly intoxicated when he crashed his Lexus into a utility pole and a tree in Broad Channel - killing his wife - was indicted Tuesday on manslaughter and drunk-driving charges.

Edward T. Bain, 39, of 433 Beach 128 Street, faces up to 15 years in prison if he's convicted at trial, according to Queens District Attorney Richard A. Brown. His indictment comes after Bain, a Verizon field technician, turned down several plea offers from prosecutors. One of those deals would have brought just a two-year sentence.

The indictment revealed for the first time that Bain's blood-alcohol content (BAC) on the night of the crash was .08 - the legal threshold for drunk-driving cases in New York. Drivers with a BAC of .08 are four times more likely to cause a crash than sober drivers, according to government statistics. Bain's BAC contrasts with his bizarre comments and reports that he was heavily intoxicated.

After the deadly accident took place on Cross Bay Boulevard on September 23, 2005, Bain claimed his wife, Donna Marie Murtagh Bain, 35, was his sister-in-law, according to a Wave source who said Bain was "blitzed." Hours later at the hospital, it is alleged, he denied involvement. "I wasn't driving. I don't know who that woman is," Bain said, according to court records.

Police also said Bain was in shock and required treatment for back, neck and facial injuries. His attorney at that time, Joseph Mure, said Bain didn't remember any of the comments he allegedly made. His new attorney did not return calls seeking comment.

Bain told a Daily News reporter that his son, Thomas, has been taunted at school with news articles about the crash and his mother's death, according to a published report.

Donna's mother, Jackie Murtagh Abrams, told The Wave that while she is encouraged by the DA's move to prosecute, she remains heartbroken over the rift that has developed between her and her grandson, who lives with his father in Belle Harbor.

"The fact that I haven't seen Thomas is really affecting me," Abrams said. "I sent him a card last week for his birthday."

Abrams was delicate in her discussion of her grandson but could not hide her contempt for Bain.

"He not only killed [Donna], he killed a big part of me, too," she said. "I hope by the first anniversary [of the crash] he's in prison."

Bain is out on $25,000 bail and is due back in court on June 14.

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