Recently in Motor Vehicle Homicide Charges Category

December 14, 2010

Fatal Accident Addition: A Family Tragedy

"In the moments after he allegedly struck Cynthia Ray [who was at the barracks to pick up an accident report involving her husband, Brian Ray] with his 2010 Chevrolet Silverado, Robert V. Bryant, 50, the chief operating officer of a computer software company, reportedly asked a state trooper, 'Did I hit somebody? A pedestrian? I don't remember doing that.' At the time, the resident of Haverhill's Bradford neighborhood was being given a field sobriety test, which State Police say he failed.

Yesterday, Bryant was charged with motor vehicle homicide by negligent operation, drunken driving, leaving the scene of personal injury and death, and other offenses.

During his arraignment in Lawrence District Court, he kept his head tilted downward and did not talk. His lawyer, Francis O'Brien, entered a not-guilty plea on his behalf.

'This is a good man who unfortunately is now a defendant in a very serious case,' O'Brien said. He characterized his client as a family man without a criminal record and no history of alcohol abuse. Bryant is married and has four children, three of whom are in college."

Brian Ray's father, Steve Ray said, "I'm sorry for [Bryant] and his family, for the anguish that he caused for his family and our family, but he didn't take his responsibility serious enough. I drive a truck. I know what responsibility is. This man, he took a life that lit up our world.''

The full article and embedded video are featured in the Boston Globe, December 14, 2010: A family tragedy, its toll multiplied

December 13, 2010

Fatal Accident Addition: Bryant Arraigned in Lawrence District Court

"A business executive accused of drunken driving told State Police he did not remember driving into a woman as she walked in front of the State Police barracks in Andover Sunday - a crash that claimed the life of the 30-year-old Haverhill woman, a prosecutor said today.

Robert V. Bryant was arraigned today in Lawrence District Court where he pleaded not guilty to numerous charges including motor vehicle homicide while operating under the influence for hitting Cynthia Anne Ray Sunday afternoon in Andover.

His defense attorney, Francis O'Brien, said Bryant is the chief operating officer for MCA Solutions, a job he handles while working from his Haverhill home where he has lived for the past 15 years.

'This is a horrible tragedy,' O'Brien said during Bryant's arraignment. He said the 50-year-old Bryant has never faced criminal charges before this weekend. 'He's a good man who unfortunately is now a defendant in a very serious case.'

O'Brien also said that Bryant, who wore a dark suit and white shirt during the arraignment and kept his head bent down while in the courtroom, has repeatedly asked about Ray.
'The (Bryant) family is distraught over what happened to this young woman,' O'Brien said. 'He is only asking about her and her family.'''

The full article is featured in the Boston Globe, December 13, 2010: Accused drunk driver did not recall crash that killed Haverhill woman, prosecutor says

December 13, 2010

Fatal Accident Addition: Defense Attorney Francis T. O'Brien, Jr. of Parker Scheer LLP to Represent Bryant

"Her family and co-workers said Cindy Ray literally lit up a room with her smile. The 30-year-old lighting specialist, who earned an interior design degree from Endicott College, lost her life steps away from the State Police barracks in Andover at about 3 p.m. Sunday.

[Ray] and the car in which her mother was waiting were struck by a pickup driven by Robert Bryant, the 50-year-old chief operating officer of a software company whose home happens to be in the same part of Haverhill as Ray's, Bradford.

After Cindy Ray's mother ran into the barracks to report the crash, troopers rushed out, one called for medical help and another arrested Bryant up Route 125.

'This is a man with no history of mental illness, no history of alcohol abuse, no history of any type of conduct other than complete law-abiding,' said defense attorney Francis O'Brien." O'Brien told the court the only violation his client has on his driving record is running a stop sign in 1984 and again in1987.

The full article, video and radio broadcast are featured on CBS News online, December 13, 2010: Woman Killed In Hit & Run Outside State Police Barracks

December 13, 2010

Fatal Accident Addition: Cynthia Anne Ray of Haverhill Killed in Crash

"A Haverhill man [Robert Bryant] has been ordered held on $50,000 bail after pleading not guilty to motor vehicle homicide and other charges stemming from allegations that he was drunk when he struck and killed a woman outside the state police barracks in Andover.

Bryant was arraigned in Lawrence District Court on Monday, a day after 30-year-old Cynthia Anne Ray of Haverhill was killed in the crash."

The full article is featured in the Boston Globe, December 13, 2010: Woman killed outside Andover state police building

December 10, 2010

DUI Drivers Formally Charged with Motor Vehicle Homicide in the Death of Brockton State Trooper

Last week, a Grand Jury indicted Kenneth Weiand (43 of Walpole) and Anthony Perry Jr. (46 of Hyde Park) in the death of state police Sergeant Douglas A. Weddleton of Brockton. The accident occurred on June 18, around 1:15 a.m. Weddleton, a married father of four, was working a construction site detail along Interstate 95 in Mansfield.

Sgt. Weddleton parked his police cruiser along the off-ramp, in order to alert drivers and protect the construction crew. The police reported that Weiand attempted to drive his Acura around the blockade. Weddleton tried to pull him over to speak with him. While speaking with Weiand next to his vehicle, Perry crashed his Ford pickup truck into the back of the Acura at a high speed. As a result, Weddleton was pinned under the Acura, as it careened across the highway due to the force of being hit from behind. He was pronounced dead after being rushed to Sturdy Memorial Hospital in Attleboro.

An alcohol breathalyzer test on scene showed Weiand's blood-alcohol level at .20, significantly above the legal limit of .08. Perry registered a level of .07 at the scene, and a .06 at the police station after the accident. While Perry was driving at under the legal limit, a .07 is still enough to impair driving. The investigation showed that both men had prior motor vehicle offenses, mostly for speeding. Neither men had a previous drunk driving charge.

Evidence was presented to a Bristol County Grand Jury and they found enough to indict the two men with motor vehicle homicide. According to a spokesman for Bristol County District Attorney C. Samuel Sutter, it is not unusual to charge two different drivers with motor vehicle homicide in the same death. The indictments charge both men with "motor vehicle homicide while driving under the influence of intoxicating liquor and/or while driving negligently so as to endanger." The felony charge is the most serious motor vehicle homicide charge there is, and carries a maximum sentence, if convicted, of 15 years in prison. The two men will be arraigned later this month in Fall River Superior Court, and Assistant District Attorney Steve Gagne has been assigned to prosecute the case.

Weddleton's friends on the force said they were grateful for the D.A.'s office pursuing these charges, and praised the diligent work and investigation conducted by the state police.

Patriot Ledger Article on Motor Vehicle Homicide Charges