NY driver charged with murder; crash killed grad
RIVERHEAD, N.Y. (AP) — A Long Island man who prosecutors say had a blood-alcohol reading four times the legal limit and approached speeds of 100 mph before crashing into a car driven by a recent high school graduate was charged Wednesday with her murder.
Suffolk County District Attorney Thomas Spota noted that the charge, based on indifference to human life, is a rarity and said it was the first time in his 11-year tenure as chief prosecutor that he sought a grand jury indictment for murder in a drunken driving case.
Michael Grasing, 31, pleaded not guilty after an 11-count indictment was unsealed in the death of 18-year-old Brittney Walsh. He stood handcuffed with his hands trembling during the brief arraignment but didn't speak; his attorney entered the plea for him. He was ordered held on $1 million bail. The attorney, Daniel Russo, declined to speak with reporters after the proceeding.
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