Driver accused of killing Boy Scout while drunk pleads not guilty

Posted: Updated:
CENTRAL ISLIP -

The man accused of driving drunk and killing a 12-year-old Boy Scout in Manorville pleaded not guilty on Thursday.

A judge gave 60-year-old Thomas Murphy, of Holbrook, until Thursday to either plead guilty or go to trial. He chose the latter.

Murphy is accused of operating his vehicle while drunk and plowing into a group of Boy Scouts walking on the side of a Manorville road in September. Andrew McMorris, 12, died a day later. The boy had hopes of becoming a pilot one day.

The courtroom was packed with relatives and friends of the victim, along with fellow Scouts, all showing their support for the McMorris.

Murphy, through his lawyer, made repeated promised to take responsibility for his suspected actions. But in Thursday's hearing, which lasted less than a minute, Murphy decided to go with a not guilty plea.

The victim's parents, Alisa and John McMorris, say they're disappointed by the decision.

Murphy is charged with offenses that include aggravated vehicular homicide, assault and DWI. He faces up to 25 years in prison if convicted on the top charge.

The next court date is scheduled for June 4.

Murphy and his attorney refused to comment Thursday.

Read more:
Family takes to skies for birthday flight in memory of Boy Scout 
Parents of Boy Scout killed by suspected drunk driver urge safety behind the wheel 
Plea deal possible for suspected drunk driver who killed Boy Scout 
Boy Scouts raise funds to name building after fallen member 
Prosecutors: Man was drunk at golf course before crash killed Boy Scout 
Officials: Boy Scout dies following suspected DWI incident 
5 Boy Scouts hospitalized after being struck by alleged drunken driver

sorry to interrupt
your first 20 are free
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please enjoy 20 complimentary views of articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.
you have reached your 20 view limit
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please login or create an account to continue enjoying News12.
Our sign-up page is undergoing maintenance and is not currently available. However, you will be given direct access to news12.com while we complete our upgrade.
When we are back up and running you will be prompted at that time to complete your sign in. Until then, enjoy the local news, weather, traffic and more that's "as local as local news gets."