Auburn man pleads not guilty in fatal Federal Way crash | Attorney tries to stop media from filming plea

Lagrant D. Pegram, the suspect in a Dec. 29 two-vehicle crash that killed 21-year-old Emmanuel G. Franco, pleaded not guilty to vehicular homicide Thursday.

The 35-year-old Auburn man appeared at his arraignment with private counsel. Seattle criminal defense attorney Lee H. Rousso, who is a former prosecutor and trial lawyer, is representing Pegram.

Before Pegram appeared before King County Superior Court Judge Mary E. Roberts, Rousso requested the judge ban the media in attendance from filming Pegram's plea. Rousso claimed this was needed to protect Pegram, who, according to Rousso, has received significant negative media attention since his arrest. Roberts denied the request.

Pegram remains in custody with bail set at $500,000. Judge Roberts commanded him to abstain from the use of alcohol or drugs, driving and contact with the Franco family if he were to post bail.

Pegram was booked into jail Dec. 29 following the 2:20 a.m. two-car collision at Pacific Highway South and South 320th Street in Federal Way. Pegram, while traveling in a Suburban northbound on Pacific Highway South, allegedly ran a red light and collided with Franco's Acura, which was traveling westbound on South 320th Street. On-scene tests revealed Pegram's blood alcohol content at .242, three times the legal limit.

Pegram will appear at 1 p.m. Jan. 26 at the Maleng Regional Justice Center, courtroom GA, for a case setting hearing.

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