Man pleads not guilty to causing fatal fiery crash on I-5

Man pleads not guilty to causing fatal fiery crash on I-5
Samuel Sampson appears at his arraignment in King County Superior Court on Sept. 30, 2013.
SEATTLE - A man accused of causing a fatal crash on I-405 while speeding more than 100 mph and being under the influence of methamphetamine pleaded not guilty to vehicular homicide.

Samuel Sampson, 27, of Woodinville, remains held on $1 million bail.

Troopers said Sampson didn't even brake before crashing into a 2002 BMW driven by 22-year-old Ian Riley Beckford. he BMW slid for several feet and then went into a rapid roll before crashing into a concrete barrier and bursting into flames on the side of the road. Beckford was trapped inside as it burned and he was pronounced dead at the scene.

Beckford had spent the day at Lake Sammamish with a longtime friend, waterskiing and swimming, and was on his way home when the crash happened, said the attorney, Eric Makus. He was a Federal Way High School graduate and was about to return to college this fall. He is survived by a 19-year-old brother and parents, Makus said.

After the arraignment, Beckford's neighbor said she always remembered him as having a smile and a wonderful little laugh.

"He was an outstanding young man and was much loved," Deanna Stevens said.

As for Sampson, she said the judge should throw the book at him.

"He was on the freeway and risking the lives of everyone else on the freeway and he took Ian's life," Stevens said. "We need to keep folks like that off the roads."

Sampson's next court hearing is scheduled for Oct. 14.