A Nassau County grand jury has indicted a retired NYPD officer from Syosset in connection with the hit-and-run death of a 13-year-old girl, authorities said Thursday.
Michael Elardo, 48, pleaded not guilty to a grand jury indictment that accuses him of leaving the scene of an incident, without reporting it, the Nassau County District Attorney’s office said.
Elardo remains free on $50,000 bail, and is due back in court on Aug. 11. His bail was reduced earlier this week from $1 million.
On June 15, Elardo, while driving his vehicle on Hempstead Turnpike in Levittown, left the scene of an incident that caused the death of 13-year-old Bryanna Soplin. Elardo surrendered for arrest by the Nassau County Police Department on June 16, the DA said.
Soplin reportedly had Down's Syndrome and was trying to visit her grandfather when she was hit by the car.Elardo had thought he struck a “construction barrel and got in touch with police 10 hours later after hearing news reports of the incident,” defense attorney Michael DerGarabedian of Rockville Centre said, according to Newsday.