fatal crash

Ex-Maine Corrections Officer Pleads Not Guilty in Crash That Killed Girl

Kenneth Morang told Gorham police he fell asleep while driving

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A former Maine corrections officer faced a judge on Monday for a crash that killed a 9-year-old girl last summer in Gorham.

Kenneth Morang, 62, pleaded not guilty to manslaughter charges at his arraignment in Cumberland County Court.

Morang is accused of colliding his pickup truck with an SUV on Route 25 July 21, 2019. Nine-year-old Raelynn Bell, who was in the SUV, was seriously injured and died days later.

Morang told police he fell asleep while driving. The then corrections officer for the Cumberland County Sheriff's Office had worked an 88-hour week prior to the crash and just come off a 16-hour day, 30 minutes before the collision happened, according to the Portland Press Herald.

The Cumberland County Sheriff's Office has said it's working with a sleep deprivation expert to help educate employees about the hazards of getting too tired.

The office also says that prior to the manslaughter charge, Morang had no record of problems, issues or concerns.

Since the crash, Morang has resigned from his position which he held 13 years.

Morang was released on personal recognizance bail with the condition he can not drive. He's due back in court in March.

If convicted, Morang faces up to 30 years in prison.

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