Deadly Boy Scout Crash And Police Coverup: 2 High-Profile Trials To Start On Long Island

WCBS 880 Newsroom
November 12, 2019 - 8:43 am
Thomas Spota Thomas Murphy

Mark Wilson/Getty Images/Suffolk County Police

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CENTRAL ISLIP, N.Y. (WCBS 880) – Two big trials are scheduled to start Tuesday on Long Island.

Opening statements are set to begin in the trials of Thomas Murphy and former Suffolk County District Attorney Thomas Spota. Both of them are high-profile cases.

Murphy is accused of driving drunk, running over and killing 12-year-old Andrew McMorris, a boy scout who was walking on the side of a road with his troop in Manorville.

Murphy pleaded not guilty to aggravated vehicular homicide and other charges in the September 2018 crash.

The trial is set to last for about five weeks in a Riverhead courtroom.

At the federal courthouse in Central Islip, Spota will stand trial.

Spota is accused of helping James Burke—a former friend and ex–Suffolk County Police chief—with a coverup after Burke beat up a heroin addict who broke into his SUV in 2012.

Spota pleaded not guilty to conspiracy to tamper with witnesses and obstruct an official proceeding, among other federal crimes.

Burke spent four years in prison and was released this year. Spota, 78, faces 20 years in prison if convicted.