Alcohol, drugs suspected in deadly Rutland crash - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Alcohol, drugs suspected in deadly Rutland crash

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Carly Ferro Carly Ferro
Alex Spanos Alex Spanos

The crash shattered the silence on Cleveland Avenue in Rutland Wednesday evening.

"I heard three different collisions," Richard Whitcomb said.

"It sounded like a large explosion," Laura Gingras said.

An out of control driver, who police identified as Alex Spanos, 23, of Rutland, plowed into three cars parked outside Discount Food and Liquidation Center. Police say Spanos was going between 60 and 80 mph on the residential street.

"Of all the fatal crash scenes I have been to, this is one of the most horrific and senseless," Rutland Police Lt. Kevin Geno said.

Police say 17-year-old Carly Ferro had just finished her shift at the store and was getting into her father's car when the chain-reaction crash started.

"Mr. Spanos struck the driver's side of Mr. Ferro's vehicle, pushing his vehicle against the wall along with his daughter, the vehicle continued to travel 100 to 150 feet further," Geno said.

Laura Gingras was one of many who rushed to help the teenager who had been dragged between the car and the wall.

"I said come on girl, pull out of it. She was just too out of it. You could see her trying to respond, but she couldn't," Gingras said.

Carly Ferro passed away a short time later at the hospital. Her 56-year-old father, Ron, remains hospitalized with a serious head injury. A woman and her two small children in one of the other parked cars were not seriously hurt. The question now-- why did Spanos lose control?

"He could have blacked out," Geno said.

Police say while many rushed to the aid of the victims, Spanos' two passengers were more concerned about hiding evidence that may have caused the crash.

"We did find alcohol and huffing material hidden in the bushes, which witnesses had given us statements that they had seen passengers in Spanos' vehicle remove from his vehicle," Geno said.

Grief counselors were on hand at Rutland High School Thursday and many students wore white shirts in honor of their classmate. The superintendent described Ferro as a standout student athlete. She was a member of the orchestra and key club. Ferro also played on the basketball team and helped lead the Raiders to the division one state golf championship last season.

Gingras says she will miss the popular high schooler who was always smiling at the cash register, "It's going to be hard from seeing the happy-go-lucky girl to how I saw her yesterday."

Thursday night, a vigil will be held for Ferro at the high school.

Friday, Rutland High School students will wear purple shirts in Ferro's honor. It was her favorite color.

Late Thursday afternoon, Spanos was charged with manslaughter, gross negligent operation with serious bodily injury and reckless endangerment. He will be arraigned Friday. And police say Spanos was moved from the hospital to jail Thursday evening, where he was held on $150,000 bail.

Spanos does have a prior criminal history, including a drunk driving arrest and consuming alcohol as a minor.

Related Story:

One person dead in Rutland crash

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