A man accused of driving drunk in a crash that killed two young women pleaded not guilty Friday to six felonies.
Tim Saavedra, 23, of Rudolph, was charged with two counts of second-degree reckless homicide, two counts of homicide by intoxicated use of a vehicle and two counts of injury by intoxicated use of a vehicle, according to Portage County online court records. The maximum punishment for the most serious felonies is 25 years in prison.
The July 20 crash on a rural Portage County road killed Melissa Peterson-Suzda and Stephanie Eberhardt, both 21. A third passenger was injured.
Saavedra told investigators that he drank three pitchers of beer - the equivalent of a 12-pack - at a street dance in Rudolph in the hours before the 2:30 a.m. crash, the criminal complaint said. A preliminary breath test after the crash indicated Saavedra's blood-alcohol level was 0.148 percent, nearly double the legal limit to drive, the complaint said.
In another development Friday, Portage County Circuit Judge Thomas Eagon rejected a defense motion asking the judge to remove himself from the case, court records said.