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Hancock / Wilton

Mays guilty in fatal crash

Second jury finds driver negligent

KEENE — Eric Mays, a former resident of Hancock who now lives in Wilton, was found guilty Wednesday of negligent homicide and aggravated DWI related to a 2011 car crash in Stoddard that killed his friend, Brandon Farrow of Hancock.

The trial in Cheshire County Superior Court was the second for Mays, after a mistrial was declared in October 2012, when a jury failed to agree on a verdict.

Jurors didn’t have that problem this time, convicting Mays on two felony counts of aggravated driving while intoxicated and one count of negligent homicide, driving while intoxicated. Mays, who is 26, was found not guilty on a charge of negligent homicide, speeding.

During both trials, prosecutors said Mays was at the wheel of a 1997 Honda Accord that crashed on Route 123 in Stoddard shortly after Mays, Farrow, 24, and Farrow’s girlfriend, Lesley Mouradian, 25, of Milford left a gathering at Willard Pond in Antrim. Farrow was pronounced dead at the scene of the accident. Mays and Mouradian, who suffered a fractured spine and concussion from the crash, were both taken by helicopter to Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon for treatment and later released.

At both trials, jurors heard differing testimony about who was driving the car.

“We are obviously very pleased with the verdict,” Cheshire County Attorney Chris McLaughlin said on Wednesday. “The jury did a conscientious job of deliberating, as evidenced by their decision on the speeding charge. I’m glad for Brandon Farrow’s family and for Lesley. It’s been almost a two-year ordeal for them.”

McLaughlin said he expected an appeal is likely to be filed.

According to Assistant Cheshire County Attorney John Webb, the negligent homicide conviction carries a maximum penalty of 7½ to 15 years in prison. The aggravated DWI convictions carry a penalty of 3½ to 7 years. Webb said Mays would only be penalized on one of the two DWI convictions.

The Ledger-Transcript was unable to contact Kimberly Kossick, the public defender who represented Mays, prior to press deadline.

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