New York Court Weighs Intoxication Defense in Wrecks

October 10, 2013

Attorneys for three people convicted of murder in deadly crashes are urging New York’s highest court to throw out those convictions, arguing their clients were too intoxicated to know the threat to others.

Martin Heidgen drove his pickup the wrong way on Long Island’s Meadowbrook State Parkway in 2005 and hit a limousine, killing the driver and a 7-year-old passenger. He had blood alcohol content of 0.28 percent.

Taliyah Taylor in 2006 sped 80 mph down Forest Avenue in Staten Island without headlights, ran a red light and killed a pedestrian. She had taken an Ecstasy pill, smoked marijuana and drank beer.

Franklin McPherson drove the wrong way on Long Island’s Southern State Parkway in 2007 and hit a jeep, killing the driver. His BAC was 0.19 percent.

The Court of Appeals heard arguments Tuesday. Rulings are expected next month.

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