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Prosecutor says she's pursuing other 'investigative avenues' in quest for resolution to accident that killed teen

LACONIA — Confirming that she did not present a case to the Belknap County Grand Jury when it convened last week, County Attorney Melissa Guldbrandsen said she is still investigating the circumstances that caused the driver of the Jeep Cherokee, Amy LaFond, 52, of Laconia, to strike two middle school students on the Messer Street Bridge in April, claiming the life of Lily Johnson and severely injuring Alyssa Miner.

Gulbrandsen said that she is reviewing the reports of investigations conducted by the Police Department and by the Belknap County Accident Reconstruction Team as well as "pursuing other investigative avenues," which she declined to specify.

"It remains an ongoing investigation," Gulbrandsen said, declining further comment.

Johnson and Miner were hit while on the sidewalk on the Messer Street Bridge, near the intersection of Opechee Street and Messer Street at approximately 2:30 p.m. on April 19. According to police, Lafond was traveling northbound on Messer Street toward its intersection with Opechee Street at the foot of the Messer Street Bridge, where a pedestrian crosswalk crosses Messer Street. A car going in the same direction had stopped at the crosswalk, apparently to enable a number of middle school students standing at the corner to cross the street.

About the same time, the two girls had walked down Opechee Street to the intersection, turned the corner, to their left, on to the sidewalk and were walking along the sidewalk on the west side of the Messer Street Bridge. For reasons that remain to be determined, Lafond skirted the stopped car, crossed into the southbound lane of Messer Street and mounted the raised sidewalk via a ramp, then hit the two girls from behind.

 
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