GREENFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) - A New Hampshire man charged with involuntary manslaughter in his daughter's plane crash death appeared in court without a lawyer Wednesday afternoon.
57-year-old Steven Fay of Hillsboro, New Hampshire was arraigned in Franklin County Superior Court in Greenfield. The judge entered a not guilty plea on Fay's behalf and released Fay on his own recognizance. Fay was ordered to send a certificate of his pilot's license pr a certified letter stating that it is lost to the Federal Aviation Administration by Friday.
Fay was indicted by a grand jury following a New Year's Day plane crash in Orange that resulted in the death of his passenger, Fay's 35 year old daughter Jessica Malin.
The Northwestern District Attorney's office is arguing that Fay was not licensed or qualified to fly a twin-engine plane without an instructor. 1st Assistant District Attorney Steven Gagne compared it to a person with a learner's permit driving an 18-wheel truck. Fay told 22News he needed more time to find a lawyer.
"I didn't have immediate cash to start on one of them and the other one is from a distance away and wanted to meet me as soon as he could be here to meet with me on Thursday", says Fay. When 22News asked him if he was taking this seriously, he responded, "Absolutely, I've been sick for over a year because of this", says Fay.
"Obviously he will have to live with that the rest of his life and that will probably weigh on him more than any criminal sanctions that can be imposed, however it's important to keep in mind, that Mr. Fay's conduct jeopardized not only his daughter's life, his own life, but the safety and well-being of anyone in his flight path", says Gagne.
Fay is due back in Franklin County Superior Court, with a lawyer, on Friday, Feb. 24.
If convicted, Fay could spend twenty years in prison, but other potential penalties include 2 1/2 years in the house of correction or probation.