Father of 2010 crash victim wants driver to finish her sentence after latest arrest

South County

WESTERLY, R.I. (WPRI) — Laura Reale, the woman convicted of causing a deadly Charlestown crash in 2010, has been re-arrested on a drug offense by Westerly Police.

Reale, 35, admitted to smoking marijuana earlier on the day in 2010 when police said she ran a red light and hit Colin Foote, 27, who was riding his motorcycle on Route 1. 

His mother and brother, driving in the car behind him, watched the horrific crash.

Reale ultimately pleaded guilty in 2010 to driving to endanger, death resulting and was sentenced to ten years with eight to serve at the Adult Correctional Institutions. She served five before being released.

She was arrested last week for possession of a controlled substance by the Westerly Police and is currently being held at the ACI to await a probation violation hearing.

It’s not the first time Reale has been accused of violating her probation. In 2016, she admitted to a violation after police said she was using marijuana and opiates and trying to cover it up by buying urine to use in her mandatory drug tests.

At the time, a judge sentenced her to rehab for the violation instead of remanding her to the ACI to finish out her 10-year sentence.

This time, Colin Foote’s father hopes Reale will be sent to prison.

“They continue to give her chances and chances and rehab,” Robin Foote said in an interview with Eyewitness News. “Enough’s enough. It’s time to change that and to put this person who killed our son in prison so she cannot harm anyone else.”

Foote, who said Reale has never reached out to his family to apologize for the deadly crash, wrote a letter Thursday to Attorney General Peter Neronha asking his prosecutors to recommend she be remanded to the ACI for the rest of her sentence, which ends in late 2020.

“It is unfathomable to my wife Maryann and I, how Laura Reale could possibly be returned to the public with her repeated drug use and disregard of the court’s generous chances time and again to ‘get clean,'” Foote wrote in the letter. “We feel that she is in a position to eventually kill or maim other innocent citizens. It is just a matter of time.”

Reale’s attorney Michael Lynch said she has not yet entered a plea to the new charge, and declined to comment on whether she committed the new drug offense.

“We’re letting the process work itself out in court,” Lynch said.

Reale was held without bail as an alleged probation violator until a hearing on Monday.

Colin Foote’s family successfully pushed for the passage of “Colin’s Law” after his death, which adjudicated repeat habitual driving offenders and mandated re-education before they could get drivers’ licenses back.

At the time of the crash, Reale had 19 traffic violations on her record. At one of her court hearings in 2010, Foote’s family wore shirts that read: “She had 19 driving violations. Her 20th killed Colin Foote.”

Robin Foote said Thursday his son was smart, funny and loved movies. He said he’s proud to have Colin’s Law as his son’s legacy.

“When a tragedy like this happens, when my wife and other son had to witness Colin’s death, you either completely give up or you get out and fight,” Foote said. “And Colin would have been the very first to step up had this happened to one of his friends, to fight for justice.”

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