CORINTH — A Hadley man has been charged with a misdemeanor for allegedly providing alcohol to a 16-year-old boy who died in a car crash in June, police said.
Matthew J. Gifford, 26, of Third Avenue, was arrested in connection with the June 29 crash on Antone Mountain Road that claimed the life of Hayden L. Bush, according to the Saratoga County Sheriff’s Office.
Bush, of Lake Luzerne, drove into a tree on the rural road around 2:40 a.m. that day, and Saratoga County sheriff’s officers determined he had been drinking alcohol before the crash.
Saratoga County Sheriff Michael Zurlo said sheriff’s investigators determined that Gifford had purchased alcohol for Bush.
He said Bush did not drink at Gifford’s home, but that the teen was “out and about” drinking in the Corinth area before the crash occurred.
Zurlo said no additional arrests were anticipated as of Wednesday. He said the investigation took weeks as officers worked to confirm Bush had been drinking, and who had gotten him alcohol.
“Our guys worked really hard on this case,” the sheriff said.
Zurlo said toxicology tests confirmed Bush was under the influence of alcohol when he crashed. He was also determined to have been speeding.
Gifford was charged with unlawfully dealing with a child and released pending prosecution in Corinth Town Court on Aug. 27.
The charge is punishable by up to a year in Saratoga County Jail.
Sheriff’s Investigator Jeffrey O’Connor headed the investigation.
Bush, who would have been a senior at Hadley-Luzerne High School, was driving a 2002 Volkswagen Jetta he owned when he went off the right side of the road near Bunzey Mountain Road.
He had a junior driver’s license, and it was not legal for him to be driving at that time of night unless headed to school or work.
He had played numerous sports in high school, and was described as “charismatic” and well-liked by his schoolmates.
An online fundraiser was set up to help his family with funeral costs on Go Fund Me, and can be accessed at bit.ly/2XqDk2s.