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Police: Alcohol likely to blame for wrong-way Northway crash in Lake George

LAKE GEORGE — State police said alcohol was likely a factor in the crash caused by a woman who drove the wrong way on the Northway last month.

The crash took place on Sept. 28 in Lake George.

Cynthia L. Murphy, 59, of South Glens Falls, was traveling south in a Hyundai Santa Fe on the northbound side of the highway at about 5:19 p.m. Her vehicle collided with a northbound Hyundai Elantra driven by 35-year-old Lake George resident Jamie Yard of Lake George.

Yard was taken by helicopter to Albany Medical Center for non-life threatening injuries and has since been released. Murphy was taken to Glens Falls Hospital for evaluation.

Trooper Kerra Burns, state police spokeswoman, said Tuesday that charges are pending against Murphy. She did not say when they would be forthcoming.

This was the second wrong-way crash on the Northway in a month.

Police said Saranac Lake resident Dennis M. Ford, 66, drove drunk in his 2017 Mini Countryman north in the southbound lanes at about 10:30 p.m. on Sept. 3 in Chester.

He crashed head-on with a 2004 Volvo XC70 traveling south.

The two passengers in the Volvo — 27-year-old Matthew G. Huff, of Westfield, New Jersey, and 31-year-old Kerry O’Reilly, of Dorchester, Massachusetts — were pronounced dead at the scene.

The driver, 31-year-old Lauren Huff was injured in the crash.

Ford was charged with felony second-degree vehicular assault and misdemeanor driving while intoxicated.

His case is pending in Warren County Court.

Michael Goot covers politics, crime and courts, Warren County, education and business. Reach him at 518-742-3320 or

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