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Woman pleads guilty to manslaughter in connection to deadly crash in Clarence

Posted at 10:28 AM, Feb 02, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-02 10:28:32-05

CLARENCE, N.Y. (WKBW) — An Akron woman has pleaded guilty to manslaughter in connection to a deadly crash in Clarence in January 2021.

The Erie County District Attorney's Office announced 38-year-old Jessica A. Novak pleaded guilty Tuesday in State Supreme Court to one count of manslaughter in the second degree.

The district attorney's office said on January 19, 2021 around 1 p.m. Novak was driving at a high-rate of speed on Main Street in the Town of Clarence, while under the influence of methamphetamine, when her vehicle crossed into a turning lane and crashed into another vehicle that was making a turn onto Goodrich Road. The driver of the vehicle that was making a turn, 65-year-old Jeanette Helms of Clarence, was fatally injured and died at the scene. Novak was taken to ECMC with various injuries.


Novak was arrested and charged in April 2021 following several weeks of investigation.

EDITOR'S NOTE: 7 News has chosen to use Novak's mugshot in accordance with our station mugshot policy, as she has pleaded guilty. You can read our full mugshot policy here.

According to the district attorney's office, Novak's actions also caused a crash involving two additional vehicles and the drivers suffered minor injuries.

Novak faces a maximum of 15 years in prison, she is scheduled to be sentenced March 22 and was remanded without bail.