SAN GABRIEL VALLEY TRIBUNE

San Dimas teen denies manslaughter

Saturday, May 14, 2005 - A San Dimas teen has denied killing two Glendora High School freshmen who were ejected from the trunk of his car and thrown into oncoming traffic, authorities said Friday.

The teen, whose named is being withheld because of his age, appeared Thursday in Pomona Juvenile Court, where he entered his plea, the equivalent of a not-guilty plea.

He was charged with two counts of manslaughter without gross negligence and one count of driving without a license all misdemeanors and remains in custody at Los Padrinos Juvenile Hall in Downey, Gibbons said.

The teen is scheduled to appear in court June 1, said Sandi Gibbons, a spokeswoman for the county's district attorney. If convicted, he could face probation or incarceration in a juvenile facility.

Gibbons said the denial was entered Thursday.

The unlicensed teen was arrested Wednesday by Glendora police in connection with the May 4 deaths of Scott Allen Atchison and Christopher David Snyder, both 15 of Glendora.

The boys were in the locked trunk of a loaded car when it careened into a tree. The Mazda Protege was traveling west on Route 66 near Compromise Line Road at 3 p.m. when police said the driver made an unsafe lane change and lost control, sending their bodies into the path of oncoming traffic.

The two boys, who hopped into the trunk because the car was full, were airlifted to Childrens Hospital where they died from multiple blunt-force injuries.

Snyder was buried Tuesday.

An open-casket viewing for Atchison is scheduled from 9 a.m. to noon today at the Church of the Open Door, 701 W. Sierra Madre Ave., Glendora. Funeral services begin at 1 p.m.

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