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Bail Posted for Teen Driver in Fatal Southern State Crash

Joseph Beer faces up to 25 years in prison if convicted.

Joseph Beer, the 17-year-old driver and lone survivor of an October crash on the Southern State Parkway that killed four of his friends, was released from Nassau County Jail after posting bail Tuesday night.

Beer's lawyer Todd Greenberg told Newsday [paid link] that Beer was released after posting a $250,000 bond, a bail that was originally set at $2 million in November.

Greenberg then petitioned a Brooklyn appellate court to reduce that amount, noting that Beer turned himself in to authorities without incident, and that his parents were going to use their home to post bond.

Nassau District Attorney Kathleen Rice said that at approximately 3:35 a.m. on Oct. 8, Beer was driving a 2012 Subaru Impreza WRX STI westbound on the Southern State at estimated speeds of more than 110 miles per hour when he lost control of the vehicle while coming over a rise in the roadway approaching exit 17N.

According to Rice, Beer was unable to negotiate a curve in the road at the bottom of the rise and left the roadway, crashing into the trees along the parkway. The impact of the crash ripped the vehicle in half, with the front half of the car located 20 feet away from the impact site.

Beer was charged in November with aggravated vehicular homicide, vehicular manslaughter in the first degree, four counts of manslaughter in the second degree, four counts of vehicular manslaughter in the second degree, driving while intoxicated-drugs, reckless endangerment in the second degree, reckless driving and unlicensed operation of a vehicle.

Beer, who will appear in court again on Friday, faces up to 25 years in prison if convicted.

Thomas Nathan January 17, 2013 at 06:40 PM
@Lynn Ok maybe not a murderer but he is being charged with manslaughter. Was it a mistake to drive yes - but even stupid mistakes have consequences. This is not blame the victims and try to say they were high or not. IT really does not matter. He is not the boy scout for being less high and driving. He did a stupid thing and 4 kids are dead. Four families will never see their children again. He deserves significant jail time.
BigIdeas January 17, 2013 at 08:23 PM
He wasn't even a licenced driver. If cars owner had insurance, it probably didn't even pay for the four funerals.
Larry January 18, 2013 at 01:53 AM
This horrible story and comments made reminds me of a career politician who had a similar event. as per Wiki: Adlai Stevenson was raised in the city of Bloomington, Illinois; his family was a member of Bloomington's upper class and lived in one of the city's well-to-do neighborhoods. At the age of twelve Stevenson accidentally killed Ruth Merwin, a 16-year-old friend, while demonstrating drill technique with a rifle, inadvertently left loaded, during a party at the Stevenson home.[4] Stevenson was devastated by the accident and rarely referred to it as an adult. However, as the Governor of Illinois he was told about a teenager who had survived an automobile accident while his friend was killed. Stevenson told the teen's father that he should tell his son that "he now has to live for two", which Stevenson's friends took to be a reference to the shooting incident.
Joseph Bennet January 19, 2013 at 01:48 PM
Three of the deceased were adults. People always asked the wrong questions and make irrelevant comments. The bottom line is: (1) he shouldn't have been driving without a license (2) his parents gave him a car with only a learners permit (3) He was doing well over 110 mph (4) He was high on drugs driving reckless on a wet roadway in which his inexperience also contributed to the death of four people.
Mikey David January 20, 2013 at 12:37 AM
Lock his ass up and throw away the key. He took the lives of four guys. I knew 1 of them Neal.Let me just say this guy Joseph well hes a pothead who thinks everything is irrelevant. Check his facebook out youll see

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