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Two arrests in 2017 Clifton Park alcohol death

Two arrests in 2017 Clifton Park alcohol death

19-year-old was left outside with lethal level of alcohol in his system
Two arrests in 2017 Clifton Park alcohol death
Samuel Heroux
Photographer: New York State Police

CLIFTON PARK — State police have charged two men who were teenagers at the time with criminally negligent homicide in the death of a 19-year-old in Clifton Park in 2017.

Authorities say the victim was left outside his home while highly intoxicated and died.

Police on Friday arrested Samuel Heroux, 21, of Cohoes, and Isaiah DePiazza, 19, of Foxwoods Drive, Clifton Park. Both were arraigned in Saratoga County Court and sent to the Saratoga County Jail pending a bail application hearing next week, troopers said.

Troopers in a press release identified Heroux, but not DePiazza, citing his age at the time of the alleged crime. His name appears, however, in court records that indicate both men were indicted last Monday by a Saratoga County grand jury -- though the indictments weren't disclosed until after Friday's arrests.

The arrests stem from the death of Liam McGlinchey on Aug. 25, 2017. Police said they were called that day to a report of an unresponsive male in the driveway of a house on Rolling Brook Drive. Police who responded found McGlinchey dead.
 
An investigation revealed that McGlinchey had been out the previous night with friends, including Heroux and DePiazza, drinking alcohol. After McGlinchey became highly intoxicated, had difficulty walking and began falling, his friends decided to return him home.

Troopers said the two brought McGlinchey to his home and left him on a grassy area outside the house, where he subsequently died. Under New York state law, criminally negligent homicide doesn't require an intent to harm another person, but that a death is caused through negligent behavior. It is a Class E felony punishable by up to four years in prison.
 
Troopers said toxicology reports revealed McGlinchey’s blood alcohol content at the time of his death was .40 -- a lethal level of intoxication, according to multiple online sources. The University at Notre Dame indicates such a high level of alcohol in the blood induces coma and carries a high risk of death from respiratory arrest.

According to his obituary, McGlinchey had immigrated from Ireland within the previous year. He was a warehouse worker for the Hannaford supermarket in Clifton Park.

McGlinchey's mother, Helen Savastio, is a Shenendehowa High School graduate who now lives in Ireland. Savastio in an email after this story was initially published, called her son "highly intelligent," noting he enjoyed reading books including David Foster Wallace's "Infinite Jest" and Goethe's "Faust."

Savastio said he had moved to his grandmother's home in Clifton Park just months before his death.
 
"Although my son’s alcohol level was extremely high, had he gotten help he would have had a chance to survive. But by leaving him under my mother's tree they left him with no chances," Savastio wrote. "Kids need to wake up and realize that it is not OK to leave someone to die."
 
She noted that in Ireland the legal drinking age is 18.
 
"My son was a good kid and had known these kids for less then two months," Savastio wrote in her email. "For all his intelligence he was too trusting and would expect someone to help him in his time of need."

Reach Gazette reporter Stephen Williams at 518-395-3086, [email protected] or @gazettesteve on Twitter.

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