By Sean I. Mills, Staff writer
State Senator and former city mayor Joseph A. Griffo was involved in a two-vehicle collision on East Oak Street Thursday evening. Law enforcers said the accident was Griffo’s fault, but he was not ticketed.
Police said the state senator caused the crash at the stop sign intersection at North James Street.
The driver of the other vehicle, 23-year-old Corina M. Trento, of Kriswood Drive, later went to the hospital for shoulder pain, authorities stated. Griffo, a Republican, has been a sitting state senator since 2006. His fourth term expires at the end of the year. He has not yet announced if he will run again.
According to the police accident report, Griffo, age 58, of North George Street, was westbound on East Oak Street at 6:37 p.m. when he entered the intersection at North James, right outside Rome Memorial Hospital. Griffo had a stop sign, but the report does not say whether or not he stopped. Police said Trento was southbound on James with the right of way and no stop sign at the intersection. Griffo’s 2013 Buick suburban collided with the front driver’s side of Trento’s 2005 Nissan sedan. Griffo’s Buick hit a snow bank in the southwest corner of the intersection, authorities stated, and Trento’s Nissan came to rest nearby against a tree in the front yard at 101 W. Oak St. Both vehicles were towed from the scene.
Police said Griffo complained of chest pain, but he declined hospital treatment. Trento complained of shoulder pain and also declined immediate treatment, then was later taken to Rome Memorial Hospital by a family member, police stated.
The report said that Griffo "has a physical disability causing loss of vision in his right eye, which may have been a contributing factor" in the accident. Griffo "was determined to be at fault in regards to this collision," the report said, but he was not ticketed.
Griffo was mayor of Rome from 1992 until he was appointed county executive in June 2003. He was first elected to the state senate in 2006, where he represents most of Oneida County, part of Lewis County and all of St. Lawrence County.