Man charged in double fatal crash out on bail

April 16, 2012 1:25:42 PM PDT
There is sadness and growing anger on Long Island after a car crash killed two teenagers.

They died on their way back from an amusement park.

"We're trying to stay strong for Ryan," said Randi Baumgardner, the victim's mother.

Randi Baumgardner says that's what her 17-year-old son Ryan would want.

But it's not easy.

Baumgardner broke down Sunday after seeing 20-year-old Thomas Smith released on bail.

"He's home. His mother is hugging him. He's eating with his parents, family, whatever and I can't even hug my son," Baumgardner said.

Police say Smith was high on prescription drugs and pot when he fell asleep at the wheel, crashing his car early Saturday morning in Ridge killing Baumgardner and 19-year-old Jacqueline Salvador.

"She was my best friend," said Alana Piotrowski, the victim's friend.

Alana Piotrowski says Salvador and Smith had been friends for years and started dating about a week and a half ago.

She says Smith was prescribed painkillers because he hurt his back and shoulder in a different car accident recently.

"He was probably just tired, it was an accident. He didn't mean to do that, he didn't want this to happen," Piotrowski said.

Smith posted a message on Salvador's Facebook wall saying, "I wasn't doped on drugs. What happened was I was OK to take and drive; I had no side effects or anything. I loved Jackie Salvador. I'm so sorry for everything."

"He loved her. He treated her well. But he made a bad choice," said Audra Piotrowski, the victim's friend.

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