Back in April of 2023, New York State Police Officers responded to the scene of an accident on the Palisades Parkway. The accident involved multiple vehicles and resulted with one person losing their life.

For the last year, law enforcement has been investigating this incident and over the weekend, NYSP announced that an arrest has been made in the case.


Palisades Accident Details

The official press release from the NYSP detailed the events of the night of the accident, April 13, 2023. According to the report, at approximately 9:45 p.m, Troopers from the Haverstraw barracks responded to the 3-car motor vehicle crash. The accident occurred on the Palisades southbound in the town of Clarkstown near exit 10.

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Preliminary investigation of the incident revealed that two drivers identified as Valentino Merceda, age 20, from Irvington, New Jersey and Cyrus Silverio, age 20, from Clifton, New Jersey were both traveling at a "high rate of speed" on the exit 10 ramp when they both attempted to pass another vehicle.

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When they made the attempt to pass Merceda in his 2001 BMW and Silverio in his 1992 BMW collided into one another. The collision caused Silverio in his BMW to overturn and strike the other vehicle they were attempting to pass, a 2024 Nissan Rogue. The identity of the driver in the Rogue was not mentioned in the release.

Unsplash: Kya Lynch:kya_lynch
Unsplash: Kya Lynch:kya_lynch

After overturning and striking the Rogue, the Silverio BMW also struck a rock bridge abutment. The abutment apparently is what keeps the bridge connected to the ground. Following the accident, Silverio was pronounced dead on the scene.

Ivan Bliznetsov

Arrest Announcement and Charges

The announcement of the arrest came last Saturday and ironically enough, last Saturday was April 13, 2024, exactly one year to the day the accident occured. The arrest was of the other driver listed in the release, Valentino Merceda.

Merceda has officially been charged with Manslaughter 2nd degree and he was arraigned in the Town of Clarkstown Court. Following his arraignment, Merceda was remanded to Rockland County Jail. His bail was set at $5,000 cash or $20,000 secured bond.

Unsplash: Matthew Ansley-ansleycreative
Unsplash: Matthew Ansley-ansleycreative

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In the state of New York, Manslaughter in the 2nd degree is classified as a class C felony charge. The penalty if convicted for this crime would be up to 15 years in state prison and paying a substantial fine. THe release did not state when Merceda is expected to be back in court.

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