Michael Elardo pleads not guilty to leaving scene of Long Island crash that killed Bryanna Soplin
Retired NYPD officer Michael Elardo has pleaded not guilty to a charge of leaving the scene of a fatal accident in connection with a Levittown crash that left a 13-year-old dead.
The June 15 crash killed Bryanna Soplin, who had Down syndrome.
Elardo was allowed to continue to be free on $50,000 bail but a judge said the defendant would have to surrender his passport.
The prosecution had asked for a bail of $250,000, saying they had credible information that the defendant had been drinking alcohol at two establishments before the crash.
Authorities have said the crash happened shortly after midnight as the teenager crossed Hempstead Turnpike at Gardiners Avenue.
Relatives have said the crash happened after Bryanna wandered away from home.
Elardo, 48, of Syosset, got out of jail Tuesday after an appellate court reduced his $1 million bail to $50,000 after his lawyer filed a petition saying the original bail was excessive.
Defense attorney Michael DerGarabedian of Rockville Centre has said his client believed he hit a construction barrel and got in touch with police 10 hours later after hearing news reports of the incident.