Charges may be upgraded to murder in deadly 2019 I-87 chase

(New York Governor's Office/governor.ny.gov via Newswatch Group)

CHESTER, N.Y. – Prosecutors in the case of a man charged in a deadly high speed crash on I-87 two years ago are considering upgrading the charge to murder.

Skyler Crouse of Akwesasne was charged in September 2019 with manslaughter and assault.

Police had clocked a Ontario-registered pickup truck going 90 miles per hour (144 kilometers per hour) through a construction zone on the Adirondack Northway (I-87).

After police tried to stop the truck, it smashed into the back of another pickup on a freeway exit ramp, killing the other driver, 38-year-old Joseph Turcotte of Brant Lake, N.Y.

Crouse turned down a plea deal that would have seen him serve 15 to 20 years in prison.

The District Attorney says the law has changed since the 2019 charges and he plans to ask a grand jury to indict Crouse on second-degree murder, according to Albany TV station WNYT.

Crouse’s attorney told the TV station that his client maintains his innocence. The attorney believes the case is overcharged.

A trial is scheduled for early June.

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