MINEOLA, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Two drivers charged in connection with a crash on Long Island that killed a newly engaged couple appeared in court on Wednesday.
Rahmel Watkins, 35, faces several charges including manslaughter after authorities said his car crashed into another vehicle on the Nassau Expressway in April. Another driver, 25-year-old Zakiyyah Steward, is facing charges of driving while intoxicated and vehicular homicide.
It is believed the two knew each other prior to the chain reaction crash. Witnesses told investigators they had been speeding side by side. Both pleaded not guilty and are being held on bail.
The chain-reaction crash killed 21-year-old Yisroel Levin and 20-year-old Elisheva Kaplan. They were going to be married this summer.
“Elisheva was vivacious and musically talented,” Elisheva’s father, Joel Kaplan said Wednesday. “Ysorel was a loving caring son brother and friend wise beyond his years.”
A large number of friends and family appeared at Wednesday’s hearing and are expected to return for the next court hearing on July 18.