Trial begins for man accused of driving drunk, killing Boy Scout on Long Island

RIVERHEAD, Long Island (WABC) -- The trial has begun for the man accused of driving drunk and killing a Boy Scout on Long Island last year.

Andrew McMorris, 12, was hiking with his Boy Scout troop in Manorville when prosecutors say Thomas Murphy was drunk and drove off the road -- hitting and killing him in September 2018.

The courtroom was packed Tuesday morning as opening statements in the case were made.

The trial is expected to be emotionally charged and prosecutors have called the case a "horror show" and said in a split second children and their friends were tossed around like rag dolls.

"It's 407 days since that man took my baby's life, and today begins that awful journey into re-living the nightmare over and over again," said the victim's mother Alisa McMorris.

RELATED: Hundreds hike in memory of Suffolk County Boy Scout killed by alleged drunk driver

Murphy's defense said the boys were being poorly supervised and were in the roadway that day.

They also emphasized Murphy's blood-alcohol content four hours after the crash was at 0.13 which they said means little in relation to his 350-pound frame.

One witness who took the stand disputed the claim that they were in the road. Anthony Higgins, 12, testified under oath that all of the scouts were on the shoulder of the road.

Lawyers played five separate 911 calls from that day to show that Murphy was never one of those callers.

The trial continues Wednesday.

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