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Not guilty pleas in Santa Fe wrong-way I-25 crash

SANTA FE, N.M. — Santa Fe resident Joe W. Salazar pleaded not guilty in state District Court in Santa Fe this morning to charges involving a wrong-way crash on Interstate 25 in December 2013.

Salazar, 53,  pleaded not guilty to three counts of great bodily harm by vehicle while driving under the influence of intoxicating liquor or drugs, said assistant district attorney Natalie Perry. Salazar is accused of driving the wrong way on the freeway and crashing head-on into another vehicle near St. Francis Drive just before 8 p.m. on Dec. 18.

There men from Pecos were injured in the crash and their pickup truck was destroyed. “It was a pretty horrific crash, a high speed crash that was head-on,” Santa Fe Emergency Manager Andrew Phelps said at the time.

Salazar has been confined to a wheelchair because of his injuries since the crash and is living at a recovery center, said Perry.

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