It may have been an accident, but it was one that should never have happened in the first place, a street racing crash that took the life of 5 teens after 2 young drivers, Cory Gloe and Tristan Reichle, decided to drag while stopped at a traffic light at Route 110 and Conklin Avenue in Farmingdale, NY May 10, 2014.
According to police, the race began just after midnight, with Gloe behind the wheel of a 2008 Toyota Scion and Reichle driving a 2001 Nissan Sentra, and lasted just about a mile before Reichle lost control and crashed into oncoming traffic, hitting a 2011 GMC Terrain. When it was over, he and everyone in his car; Jesse Romero, Noah Francis, Carly Lonnborg and Cody Talanian were dead, and 2 passengers in the SUV, identified as Gloriajean and Mingaila Milas were seriously injured. Although Gloe’s car never made contact with the other vehicles, he pleaded guilty to a 17-count indictment stemming from the accident and will now face 6-months in jail. The charges include 5 counts of manslaughter as well as criminally negligent homicide, charges of assault and leaving the scene of an accident among others.
Although he could have faced 5-15 years behind bars, acting state Supreme Court Justice Terence Murphy announced yesterday that he planned to sentence the now 19-year old as a youthful offender under a plea deal. This also means that Gloe will not have a criminal record as an adult. Actual sentencing will be handed down on May 20. Gloe will also be placed on 5-years probation upon his release. The judge, who offered his condolences to the families of the victims told Gloe that the reason he decided on the youthful offender status was, despite the serious nature of the charges against him, “it is not to stigmatize you with a criminal record that was triggered by hasty or thoughtless actions, that were not the serious deeds of a hardened criminal.”
Court documents also showed that not only did toxicology reports show that Reichle, 17, had a blood alcohol level of 0.07 at the time of the accident (enough to have made him legally impaired under state law) there was evidence that he had taken marijuana sometime before the crash. Authorities also said that all 4 of his passengers were also impaired by drugs and or alcohol that fateful night, and that a crack pipe, as well as unspecified amounts of heroin and alcohol were recovered from his car.
In the meantime, relative of the dead teens expressed their outrage over the leniency of Gloe’s sentence, calling it a :”slap on the wrist,” and denouncing the “system as broken.”