(RepublicanView.org) – A New Jersey man pleaded guilty to attempting to record a video for the social media platform Snapchat while driving his Tesla 156 MPH before causing a deadly crash.
On Memorial Day weekend in 2022, 23-year-old Vasu Laroiya, a student at Rutgers, crashed into a car being driven by Katryn “Katie” Fisher, 23, who was studying at the University at Albany. Her car careened into a guard rail and erupted in flames soon after. She was rushed to Albany Medical Center but died from her injuries shortly after arriving. The incident occurred on the New York State Thruway in Colonie, just outside of Albany.
Laroiya, who was intoxicated at the time and suffered no significant injuries, originally faced second-degree murder charges. However, his charges were reduced as part of a plea deal after he originally pleaded not guilty to an indictment with seven counts. He was ordered by the office of Albany County District Attorney P. David Soares to stay in the area while awaiting trial.
He is now facing a vehicular homicide conviction. The charge carries an 8-25 year prison sentence. Laroiya asked his attorney, Lee Kindon, to request that the judge allow him to continue his studies at Rutgers while awaiting trial. The judge denied his request.
This wasn’t Laroiya’s first legal incident. He had already been convicted of DWI twice before. His first conviction came in 2019 in his home state of New Jersey.
Fisher’s relatives said in her obituary that she was a “shining light” to those around her and aspired to become a teacher. She was also described as someone who was responsible and safety conscious.
The Saratoga County native had just completed her junior year at the University. Her obituary states that her prospects for the future were bright. Her father vowed in a social media post to continue the fight for awareness and to keep Laroiya imprisoned “as long as possible.”
Laroiya is scheduled to be sentenced on January 26, 2024.
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