Teen charged in crash that killed his two friends
A West Hempstead teen paralyzed in a crash that killed his two friends last April was arrested and charged with criminal negligent homicide Friday.
Herbert Martinez, 17, spent four months in the hospital recovering from the crash. He suffered brain trauma, is paralyzed on his right side and cannot speak. He faces up to four years in prison, if convicted.
Police say Martinez was speeding as he drove his friends Quinntin McDonald and Saul Hernandez Lopez from lunch back to West Hempstead High School when the crash occurred. Martinez lost control of the vehicle, hit a utility pole and then a dumpster filled with concrete, according to authorities. His two friends died in the crash.
?This case is quite simply a tragic accident, it?s nothing more,? says Martinez?s attorney Brian Griffin. ?This is not a criminal case, this shouldn't be handled in criminal court.?
Nassau Detective Gary Ferrucci says the case is about responsibility. Friends who know Martinez say the pain of his injuries and of knowing his friends are dead is enough.