A man accused of killing teenager in a a wrong-way drunken driving crash pleaded not guilty to
a second-degree murder charge.
Twenty-nine-year-old Dennis Leporin of Columbia entered the plea Wednesday in Cole County Court. Besides the murder count, Leporin also is charged with assault, drunken driving persistent offender and driving while revoked.
Authorities said one night in March, Leporin was headed the wrong way on southbound 54 when he hit 19-year-old Chelsea Fredrickson at the intersection of Highway 54 and 179.
According to police, the cars were traveling at speeds exceeding 60 miles per hour.
Chelsea was killed on impact. Her boyfriend Jasper Richmond was in her car and was seriously injured.