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Virginia teen denies guilt in fatal motor vehicle accident

Inexperienced drivers are often at the root of many car accidents. A fatal Virginia crash that occurred last year is no exception. Last spring, during their spring break vacation time, a group of Northern Virginia teens were riding together when the car's 18-year-old driver lost control of the vehicle, leading to a fatal car accident.

The car hit a deer, spun off the road and then struck some trees. The driver is now on trial for reckless driving and involuntary manslaughter.

The accident happened after the group of teens left a gathering in Haymarket, Virginia. They drove down a hilly, narrow road late in the evening in order to view the city lights of Washington, D.C.

Unfortunately for the group, a deer appeared in the road and set off the devastating chain of events. After the vehicle hit the trees, the driver was thrown from the car along with three out of the four passengers riding with him. An additional passenger became trapped within the vehicle.

All five of the car's occupants were injured, and two succumbed to their injuries following the accident. The two teens that died were just 15 years old. In addition to the 18-year-old operator of the car, a 17-year-old and a 14-year-old survived the crash. Investigators discovered that none of the car's occupants had been wearing their seat belts at the time, and one of the teens had been sitting on a child safety seat.

Witnesses reported different speeds at which the car was traveling that night, and prosecutors have presented data from the vehicle's computer to support their assertion that excessive speed was a factor in the crash. Charged with reckless driving and involuntary manslaughter, the young driver has pleaded not guilty.

Source: Inside NOVA, "Driver pleads not guilty in fatal Logmill Road crash," Amanda Stewart, April 23, 2012

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