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Alleged Drunk Driver Involved in Fatal Andover Car Crash Does Not Remember Striking Haverhill Pedestrian, Say Police

Police have identified the woman who was fatally struck in an Andover pedestrian accident on Sunday as Cynthia Anne Ray. The 30-year-old woman was walking to the state police barracks on Route 125 when the catastrophic incident happened.

At the time of the Andover, Massachusetts car accident, Ray was going to pick up an accident report because her husband had involved in a separate collision earlier that day. The driver of the Chevy pickup that struck Ray, 50-year-old Robert V. Bryant, is accused of leaving the crash site. Troopers apprehended him some 150 yards away from the scene. Bryant reportedly failed three sobriety tests, stumbled as he was getting out of the car, and refused to take a chemical breath test. He allegedly has admitted to drinking a few beers.

At his arraignment in Lawrence District Court today, Bryant pleaded not guilty to a number of criminal charges, including motor vehicle homicide, negligent operation of a motor vehicle, operating under the influence of liquor, and leaving the scene of a crash that caused personal injury. He allegedly told police that he does not remember striking Ray.

Drunk Driving
According to a report released last week by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, about 30 million Americans drive drunk each year. Another 10 million motorists drive while under the influence of drugs. Thousands are killed each year because someone was driving while drunk and/or drugged.

The US Department of Transportation says that 10,839 people died in US drunk driving crashes in 2009-a slight decrease from the 11, 711 drunk driving deaths in 2008.

As our Boston injury lawyers have said in past blog posts, driving while drunk can be deadly. Not only do the victim and his/her family and friends suffer, but also, in many cases, a drunk driver will have irrevocably altered his/her life. In addition to possible jail time and a criminal record, a negligent driver can also be held liable in civil court by family members wishing to recover Massachusetts wrongful death damages.

Bradford woman hit, killed near state police barracks, Boston Herald, December 13, 2010
Accused drunk driver did not recall crash that killed Haverhill woman, prosecutor says, Boston.com, December 13, 2010
Police ID Bradford Woman Killed in Andover, Eagle-Tribune, December 13, 2010
40 Million in U.S. Driving Drunk or Drugged, US News, December 9, 2010

Related Web Resources:
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

Alcohol-Impaired Driving, NHTSA (PDF)