Police: I.P. mother overdoses, crashes car in Long Beach

Woman’s 8-year-old son home alone during incident


An Island Park woman was arrested Wednesday morning after she allegedly overdosed on heroin while driving in Long Beach, and crashed her car into a storage unit near the city’s fire department.

Kristie Steele, 31, was driving southbound on National Boulevard when she drifted across the northbound lane near West Market Street and crashed into a storage pod, according to Long Beach Police Commissioner Michael Tangney. He added that she crashed while at “a coasting speed” and had hit a snow bank, which slowed her down. “She got so luck that she didn’t kill anybody,” he said.

Long Beach Police and paramedics arrived to the scene at about 9:45 a.m., where Steele was found not breathing and without a pulse, Tangney said. She was revived with Narcan, and was transported to South Nassau Communities Hospital in Oceanside. Once awake, Tangney added, Steele informed police that her 8-year-old son was home alone.

Long Beach Police found two glassine envelopes — normally used to package heroin — in the car, as well as a hypodermic needle behind Steele’s ear, Tangney said.

Steele was charged with DWI, criminal possession of a controlled substance and six counts — three felony and three misdemeanor — of aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle.

Nassau police went to her home in Island Park and said her son is now safe in the custody of his grandparents, News 12 reported. That resulted in an additional charge of endangering the welfare of a child.

Tangney said Long Beach Police has seen an uptick in heroin use, and has responded to more overdose calls in recent years. He added that LBPD has trained more than 200 members of the city workforce, including the entire police force and lifeguards, who regularly carry Narcan kits.

“We’ve been very successful with both our police department and paramedics with having quite a few Narcan saves,” Tangney said, “that normally would have been fatal overdoses.”