Man charged in fatal restaurant crash pleads not guilty

WOBURN, Mass. (AP) — The driver of an SUV that crashed through the front of a Massachusetts pizza restaurant, killing two customers, has multiple sclerosis, but the condition did not play a role, prosecutors said Monday.

Bradford Casler, 55, of Newton, was released on personal recognizance after pleading not guilty Monday in Middlesex Superior Court to two counts of motor vehicle homicide and operating a motor vehicle to endanger. Prosecutors had asked for $10,000 bail.

Casler was speeding and did not apply his brakes when he went through an intersection and crashed into Sweet Tomatoes restaurant in Newton on March 1, prosecutor Chris Tarrant said.

Gregory Morin, 32, of Newton, and Eleanor Miele, 57, of Watertown, were killed. Seven other people were injured. The restaurant remains closed.

David Meier, Casler’s attorney, previously said that his client’s “health and physical condition could not have prevented such a tragic accident.”

Meier said Monday that he will review the information prosecutors used to say his medical condition did not cause the crash.

Multiple sclerosis is a disease of the central nervous system that can cause pain, fatigue, limb numbness, dizziness and weakness.

Casler feels “sorrow and grief” about the crash, has not driven since and likely never will again, Meier said.

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