Drunk Driver Whose Pal Died In Crash Thought He Was Alone

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The allegedly drunken driver who flipped a automobile in Chinatown after a Christmas bash instructed cops — minutes after making an attempt to pry his dying pal from the horrific wreck — that he thought he was alone within the automobile, new courtroom papers present.

Gerald Joseph, 22, made the perplexing assertion to police at 1:15 a.m. on Dec. 26, lower than 10 minutes after hurtling off the Manhattan Bridge ramp with Shareef Bellerand, 17, within the passenger seat, data present.

”I do not know, somebody mentioned I used to be within the passenger seat. I do not know if there’s anybody else within the automobile,” Joseph instructed Police Officer Arland Belande on the crash web site, in response to paperwork filed at his arraignment Thursday in Manhattan Supreme Court docket.

Prosecutors mentioned Joseph jumped a curb, putting a light-weight pole and fireplace hydrant earlier than the 2004 Mazda 6 flipped over and burst into flames.

Protection lawyer Chris DiLorenzo mentioned his consumer was “unresponsive” when cops received to the scene.

“He was reacting after waking up,” he mentioned. “I do not know if he was in any form of mind-set to have an clever dialog with the police after that form of accident.”

Joseph had been rushing on the bridge — going 65 mph in a 35 mph zone — and the hydrant he struck was launched throughout 4 lanes of visitors on the Bowery, prosecutors mentioned.

The Each day Information beforehand reported the experience was so mangled it took responders 20 minutes to take away the pair.

Bellerand died at New York-Presbyterian Hospital. He would have turned 18 subsequent week.

Joseph, of Brooklyn, pleaded not responsible to manslaughter and vehicular manslaughter prices at his arraignment Thursday. He is free on $50,000 bail.

The suspect’s breathalyzer studying round four:30 a.m. was greater than twice the authorized restrict to drive at .16. A blood alcohol check taken at 6 a.m. was barely decrease.

He admitted he had “two beers and three cups of Hennessy” at a celebration in New Jersey earlier than borrowing the automobile from one in all Bellerand’s kinfolk and driving to the town.

Joseph got here to grips with actuality about 6:15 a.m. at Bellevue Hospital.

“How a lot bother am I in?” he allegedly requested an officer.

The Manhattan District Legal professional’s workplace really useful a sentence of three 1/Three-to-10 years in jail if Joseph pleads responsible.

“Drunk driving across the holidays claims the lives of far too many victims,” District Legal professional Cy Vance Jr. mentioned in an announcement.

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