Ballston Spa teen was driving at nearly 100 mph, prosecutors say

A Ballston Spa teen was arraigned in Saratoga County Court yesterday, and prosecutors said his car was going nearly 100 mph when it slammed into a tree, ending the life of a Ballston Spa High School student.

Brian A. Vecchio, 18, of 110 Brookline Rd., Ballston Spa, is accused of manslaughter in the second degree, criminally negligent homicide and reckless endangerment in the first degree, all felonies. He is also charged with the misdemeanors of reckless endangerment in the second degree and reckless driving. In addition, Vecchio has been charged with various traffic infractions.

Vecchio is alleged to have been operating a Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck on Barkersville Road in the Town of Providence on or about Jan. 2, losing control of the truck while attempting to pass another vehicle in a no passing zone and crashing into a utility pole. Noelle S. Johnsen, 17, was a passenger in the truck and sustained injuries in the crash that led to her death.

Saratoga County District Attorney James Murphy said the information on the truck’s black box indicates it was traveling at 98 mph just prior to impact. That information led to the harsher charges being leveled against Vecchio, Murphy said.

“The Grand Jury has reviewed the investigation conducted by the Saratoga County Sheriff’s Office and concluded that in addition to the initial charges, more significant charges were warranted based upon the defendant’s actions as well as all of the evidence gathered during the course of the investigation. We will proceed with the case in order to provide some measure of justice for the victim of this crime and her family,” said Saratoga County District Attorney James Murphy.

Vecchio was held in lieu of $15,000 cash bail or $30,000 bond, and remanded to Saratoga County jail. The case has been adjourned until a later date.

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