Driver charged in deadly Waimanalo crash pleads not guilty

Chanel Franco

A woman charged in a deadly Waimanalo crash pleaded not guilty in court Thursday.

Chanel Franco was indicted by a grand jury for negligent homicide in a crash that occurred on April 15, 2015.

Police said Franco was driving on Hihimanu Street just before 11 a.m. when the car lost control, veered off the road, hit a pole, spun around and came to a stop on the grassy shoulder.

Her passenger, Jessica Lum, 19, was thrown from the car and died. No one was wearing a seat belt.

Franco’s attorney, Michael Green, said she’s devastated by what happened.

“My client is heartbroken. Their families are heartbroken,” he said. “These are people who were friends. The young girl who died certainly didn’t deserve to die… and obviously my client will live with this the rest of her life and the other families lost a beautiful person, so it’s tough.”

Franco’s trial is scheduled for May.

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