Cory Gloe (left) is facing a somewhat novel charge in New York’s Nassau County for his involvement in a tragic crash that killed five teenagers and injured two other people. Gloe, 18, was not in any of the cars that crashed. Rather, he is facing manslaughter and criminally negligent homicide for allegedly goaded another driver into participating in a street race.
Tristan Reichle, 17, appears the most responsible for the crash. Reichle (right) died with his four passengers when he veered across the median and struck an oncoming SUV. Two people in the SUV were injured. Court records show Reichle was legally impaired at the time with a blood-alcohol level of 0.07.
Gloe’s lawyer insists that there is no evidence that his client was participating in a drag race. The question could become whether goading is enough as the foundation for such serious felony charges. However, police insist that Gloe stopped at a red light in the lane next to Reichle and challenged him to a race several times. A race then ensued with Reichle losing control of his 2001 Nissan. He was killed in the crash along with Jesse Romero, 18; Carly Lonborg, 14; Noah Francis, 15; and Cody Talanian, 17, was died later.
There is also the possibility of civil liability against Gloe though the plaintiff conduct issues in such a case would be extremely difficult to overcome for the families of the dead teenagers. The senseless loss for these families is obviously incredible. On one hand, if Gloe was the instigator of the drag race, it would seem that charges are appropriate, though some would argue that reckless driving and lower charges would be more appropriate. What strikes me as difficult in unraveling the issue of who instigated the race in such a circumstance. It is not clear who the surviving witnesses are. The police clearly have some basis to alleged that Gloe repeatedly challenged Reichle. Teenagers are known to act in stupid ways, including drag racing. In this case, it appears that does drivers acted stupidly. However, at what point does the other teen become criminal liable for murder?
Do you think that the teenager should face a murder (manslaughter) charge in such a case?