Trial begins for man accused of driving drunk, killing Boy Scout in Manorville
Opening statements got underway Tuesday in the trial of a Holbrook man accused of driving drunk and killing a Boy Scout in Manorville.
Authorities say Thomas Murphy, 60, was driving drunk in September of last year when he slammed his Mercedes into 12-year-old Andrew McMorris and a group of Boy Scouts on a hike.
Murphy had issued statements indicating that he would accept responsibility for the deadly crash during prior court appearances, before deciding to plead not guilty and going to trial.
The move sparked outrage among the McMorris family, friends and the community.
Murphy petitioned a judge to throw out statements and evidence he gave to police before he was arrested, where he admitted he had three drinks that day and asked about McMorris' condition after the crash.
A judge ruled against Murphy and is allowing the testimony to be presented at trial. Murphy pleaded not guilty to a 16-count indictment that includes aggravated vehicular homicide.
In court, Murphy’s lawyer said that even though the boy’s death is a tragedy, the Scouts may have been in the roadway during the time of incident, which is how they were struck.
One of those Boy Scouts took the stand Tuesday that he was right behind McMorris when the incident occurred. He said the Scouts were not in road.
The McMorris’ family said they plan to be in court everyday of this trial which is expected to last from three to five weeks.