No firm answers yet in fatal Brookfield crash

Brookfield Police Major Jay Purcell said Tuesday afternoon that the investigation into the cause of the collision on Candlewood Lake Road that killed one 19-year-old driver, and injured a second, 16-year-old driver, is continuing as the department awaits final words from the medical examiner’s office.

But Purcell stated that no charges are expected to be filed against the 16-year-old driver. From what police have ascertained from witnesses to the crash, the victim, identified as Amanda Sarapochiello, of North  Lake Shore Drive, was driving a Subaru Outback stationwagon northbound when she ended up crossing the double-yellow center line. What caused her to do so is an answer Purcell said the police hope they can glean, but as there were no passengers in either of the two vehicles those answers may not be so easy to find.

“We certainly want to get answers if we can; to see what might have taken  place,” Purcell said. “But that will probably take a few weeks.”

The medical examiner’s office will do a toxicology screen and other such tests, and police will also be inspecting the vehicle’s mechanical systems and other background information on the victim that might shed light on what occurred, Purcell said.

But at this time there are two families who are grieving, and the police want to be respectful of this difficult time, he said.

Brookfield High School Interim Principal Mark Jewett said he has been in touch with both families, and talked with staff so they are able to support one another and give counsel to any students who may need to talk.

Jewett said he did not have Sarapochiello in any of his classes, and was not a student this past year. Two years ago, she was a student for part of the year in the high school’s alternative education program.

He expressed his deepest condolences to both families, and stated he hopes the school can be a source of help in the healing process as it is such a close-knit community of faculty and students. And he said that support will be ongoing for the survivor as the school year starts and as the months progress.

These tragedies always are shocking “as you would hope that these young lives live out their days,” Jewett said.

“We hope the family finds healing … and hope they have good remembrances and that they find support in each other, and remember her in a positive way,”  Jewett concluded.


Nanci Hutson