Nassau County police shared new details Monday on an alleged drunken-driving crash that killed three women over the weekend, while the 22-year-old driver accused in the case pleaded not guilty.
The three women killed in the New Hyde Park crash just after 11 p.m. Saturday were all related. Two of the victims, 66-year-old Marlene Liu and 68-year-old Ho Hua, were from the Woodside neighborhood in Queens; the third, 41-year-old Tu Nguyen, was from North Carolina.
New video showed the moment of impact as a Mercedes-Benz was seen speeding down Jericho Turnpike, and then T-boning a Lincoln Town Car with six people inside, three of whom died. The women were the grandmother, aunt and cousin of a girl who had just celebrated her 16th birthday at a catering hall in the town.
The women were in the backseat of the car at the time of the crash. Responding officers found mangled cars and multiple victims. All three women were pronounced dead.
The two other passengers in the Lincoln and the driver were taken to a local hospital and are expected to survive. Two men in the car, a 67-year-old and a 42-year-old, were relatives as well. Police did not say how fast the Mercedes was traveling at the time of the crash.
The Mercedes driver, 22-year-old Dante Lennon, was arrested on charges of vehicular manslaughter and driving while intoxicated. The blood alcohol level for the Freeport driver was just above the legal limit. He was taken to a hospital for treatment of injuries he suffered in the crash.
From his hospital bed, Lennon pleaded not guilty in a virtual arraignment. Information on a possible attorney wasn't immediately clear.
Police asked for the public health, looking for any information as to what Lennon may have been doing leading up to the crash.