Driver Charged in Fatal Route 7 Crash Pleads Not Guilty

One of the drivers involved in Tuesday's fatal crash on Route 7 in Latham pleaded not guilty Thursday afternoon.

Jessica Bellerose was arraigned in Colonie town court just hours after being released from Albany Medical Center. She arrived wearing a hospital gown with a blanket shielding her face.

An attorney for the 41-year-old Troy woman entered a plea of not guilty to changes including vehicular manslaughter and driving while intoxicated.

Bellerose was released on $75,000 bail. As part of her probation, she won't be allowed to drive.

State police say that, Tuesday night, Bellerose was driving on Route 7 in Latham when her car came into contact with another car, went through the median, and crashed into two cars driving in the opposite direction.

One of those cars was driven by 18-year-old Paige Ahearn of Waterford. Ahearn was pronounced dead at the scene.

Mike McDermott, the attorney representing Bellerose, says he has seen little evidence from the state and his client has a clean driving record.

Toxicology results for Bellerose are expected to be released next week, according to McDermott.

Time Warner Cable News spoke with with friends of Paige Ahearn off camera Thursday. They described her as caring, funny, and outgoing.

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