Other driver in fatal Northway crash says he was not drunk

Posted at: 12/05/2012 4:51 PM
Updated at: 12/05/2012 5:13 PM
By: WNYT Staff


COLONIE - Siena College student Dennis Drue told his lawyer that he was not drunk when, according to police, he caused the accident on the Northway that took the lives of two teenagers and critically injured two others.

Dennis Drue has hired one of the best known attorneys in the area.

That lawyer, Steve Coffey, would not allow NewsChannel13 to speak with Dennis Drue, but he says Drue told him that he had “A couple of drinks” at The Koto Japanese restaurant in Colonie in the hours just before that horrific accident”

Before the terrible crash on the Northway Saturday night, troopers say Drue was going about 75 miles an hour as he aggressively switched two lanes, striking the rear of an SUV with the four teenagers.

Last night’s memorial service at Shenendehowa High School was evidence of the deep emotions caused by the deaths of Chris Stewart, a Shen football player and Deanna Rivers, a softball player for Shen, critically injured Matt Hardy, also of Shen, and Bailey Wind, a student at Shaker High School.

Coffey says Dennis Drue is aware of the hostility his actions have engendered.

Drue, who does not work, lives in a condo in Halfmoon, and has a small child by one woman.

Drue’s current girlfriend is about to have a baby any day.

Drue was arrested in 2008 for marijuana possession and resisting arrest.
Drue was also arrested twice this year for felony drug possession in Colonie.

Those charges were dropped.

Drue had his license suspended for one year after three speeding charges, but it was valid at the time of the accident. 

Troopers say a field test showed evidence of alcohol, but a blood sample will decide what charges will be brought.

Attorney Coffey says he does not want anyone thinking that he, or Drue is being cavalier about a terrible tragedy.

Results of the blood alcohol test are expected on Friday afternoon, and it's then that authorities have to decide what the charges against Drue will be.

Right now, he's free, no charges have been brought.

Meanwhile, District Attorney Jim Murphy was supposed to meet with the families of the victims today.