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Teen Driver Charged in Deadly Southern State Parkway Crash

Joseph Beer, the 17-year-old driver in the Southern State Parkway crash that resulted in the death of his four friends, now faces multiple felony charges and up to 25 years in prison.

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The teen driver behind the wheel the night his Subaru lost control on the Southern State Parkway, resulting in a horrific crash that killed four of his friends, was arrested and charged on Friday with multiple felonies after a blood test revealed that he had tested positive for marijuana.

Among other charges, Joseph Beer, 17, of Queens, could face up to 25 years in prison for aggravated vehicular homicide and second degree manslaughter.  Beer pleaded not guilty to the charges.  His bail was set at $2 million.  
Nassau County District Attorney Kathleen Rice reiterated the details of the case as she announced the charges against Beer.  According to Rice, Beer was travelling over 110 miles per hour when he lost control of his vehicle that crashed into trees on the side of the road around 3:35 a.m. on Sunday, Oct. 8.  His Subaru Impreza, a graduation present from his parents, split in half, and he and his friends were thrown from the vehicle.  Beer was the sole survivor and suffered only minor injuries.
His four friends, three 18-years-old and one 17, all attended the same Queens high school as Beer.
Beer’s lawyer, calling the crash a “tragic accident,” has said that his client will fight the charges.  He also said that Beer’s parents could not afford to post the bail, which means Beer will remain in custody.
Beer’s parents were charged with unlicensed operation of a vehicle, because their son only had a learner’s permit, and could face up to 15 days in jail and a $300 fine.
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