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Bergen County grand jury indicts 2 drivers for bike fatality

You’ve heard it said or perhaps said it during a frustrating moment while driving in New Jersey: “That driver acts like he owns the road.” What you’re referring to is a motor vehicle operator who speeds or weaves through traffic without consideration for the safety of others. Callous driver attitudes become criminal and civil offenses when unsafe behavior causes injuries or deaths.

A Bergen County grand jury recently indicted two men who once worked for Gotham Dream Cars, an Englewood company that leases luxury vehicles. The men, ages 19 and 28, were charged with aggravated manslaughter and vehicular homicide for causing a fatal motorcycle crash in 2012. The victim, a 56-year-old father of two, died in head-on collision that was so violent the bike’s engine was thrown 20 feet from the rest of the wreckage.

The defendants were driving separate Ferraris, one behind the other, in East Rutherford. Police said the two drivers were traveling at high speeds on the 25-mph road. The driver of the lead car apparently lost control in a curve, which caused the Ferrari behind him to swerve into oncoming traffic.

The man who died was a record store owner, on his way to MetLife Stadium to help set up a music festival. Gotham Dream Cars leased parking lot space from the stadium for a same-day event, where drivers could pay to test drive expensive sports cars on a nearby track. The employer and the stadium are defendants in a civil claim by the victim’s family for promoting “ultra-hazardous conditions” that factored into the motorcyclist’s death.

Grief following an accident victim’s death can be overwhelming for survivors who know that the loss didn’t have to happen. Careless drivers who cause injury accidents or fatalities in Bergen County sometimes don’t face criminal charges. Even when they do, victims and family members may file compensation claims through New Jersey civil courts.

Source: The Record, “Two Ferrari drivers indicted in East Rutherford death of Kinnelon motorcyclist” Karen Sudol, Apr. 01, 2014

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