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Fort Covington man charged in fatal Ray Brook accident

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RAY BROOK - A 20-year-old Fort Covington man has been charged following a Thursday afternoon hit-and-run accident on state Route 86 in Ray Brook that claimed the lives of two Potsdam residents.

New York State Police charged Trevor J. Sisto with a felony count of first-degree unlawfully fleeing a police officer and driving while ability impaired by drugs. He was also ticketed for reckless driving, failure to keep right and speeding.

Lake Placid Police also charged Sisto with first-degree attempted assault, reckless endangerment, three counts of endangering the welfare of a child, leaving the scene of a personal injury motor vehicle accident, reckless driving and numerous vehicle and traffic violations.

He was arraigned in Lake Placid Village Court and North Elba Town Court and was sent to the Essex County Jail on $100,000 cash bail or $200,000 bond, to reappear Tuesday afternoon.

Troopers said they were contacted around 1:30 p.m. by the Lake Placid Police Department to request assistance in locating a vehicle that was involved in a hit-and-run accident in the village of Lake Placid.

They said they located the vehicle traveling westbound on state Route 86 at a high rate of speed. When they attempted to stop the vehicle as it approached the hamlet of Ray Brook, it entered the eastbound lane and collided head on with a Honda Fit that was traveling east. Both vehicles exited the north side of the highway where they came to rest.

James E. Barney, 42, of Potsdam, the driver of the Honda Fit, was pronounced dead at the scene by Essex County Coroner Francis Whitelaw. A front seat passenger, Kim Barney, 38, also of Potsdam, was taken to Adirondack Medical Center and later airlifted to Fletcher Allen Health Care, where she died from her injuries.

A rear seat passenger, Emily Colby, 11, also of Potsdam, was airlifted from the scene to Fletcher Allen Health Care, where she was undergoing surgery for multiple injuries and was listed in critical condition.

Sisto was taken into custody following the accident. Mr. Barney, Ms. Barney and Miss Colby were trapped and were extricated by Lake Placid and Saranac Lake Fire and Rescue personnel.

The State Police Aviation and Collision Reconstruction Unit responded to the scene. Troopers said the preliminary investigation indicates Sisto had been involved in other accidents prior to this collision, and had been operating in an extremely reckless manner through the village of Lake Placid and town of North Elba.

They said Friday that the collision is still under investigation by State Police, Lake Placid Police and the Essex County District Attorney, and further charges against Sisto are pending.

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