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Driver of van that crashed into McKinley Monument accused of driving under the influence of narcotics

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Posted at 2:40 PM, Mar 29, 2021

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — The driver of a the van that crashed into the McKinley Monument in Niagara Square on November 26 is now accused of driving under the influence of narcotics.

40-year-old Paul Tolbert of Buffalo was virtually arraigned Monday on an indictment charging him with:

  • Manslaughter in the second degree.
  • Vehicular manslaughter in the second degree.
  • Criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree.

Tolbert is accused of driving a minivan at a high rate of speed south on Delaware Avenue and then crashing the vehicle into the McKinley Monument in Niagara Square. The crash killed Tolbert's passenger, 34-year-old Angel Marie Cobb of Buffalo.

The Erie County District Attorney's Office says Tolbert was allegedly under the influence of cocaine and fentanyl at the time of the crash. A small bag containing white powder that was determined to be fentanyl was allegedly found in Tolbert's clothing.

If convicted of all charges Tolbert faces a maximum of 15 years in prison. He is due back in court May 4 for a pre-trial conference and remains held without bail.