Articles Posted in Motor Vehicle Homicide

It’s a sign of the times. It used to be that the worst thing you could do when driving was to pick up and answer your cell phone, get distracted, and cause an accident, or worse, a Massachusetts motor vehicle homicide.

Nowadays, it’s texting while driving that we all have to be even more careful of. Since more and more people are texting on their mobile phones, and doing it more than ever before, it makes texting while driving all the more scary, dangerous and insidious.That’s why it’s against the law to text and drive at the same time.

Nothing makes this point more clear that the first-ever trial of its kind that began in Massachusetts the week of May 30, 2012, in Haverhill District Court. Allegedly, 17-year-old Aaron Deveau was texting on his mobile device back in 2011, while he was driving on a Haverhill street. While reportedly texting and not paying attention, Mr. Deveau’s car crossed the center line of the roadway. In doing so, his car crashed head-on with a vehicle that was being driven by a 55-year-old man, Donald Bowley. Eighteen days later, Mr. Bowley died, allegedly due to injuries he suffered in the Haverhill car crash.

In a painful lesson that alcohol is not the only drug that causes death when mixed with driving, a 25 year-old woman was killed this past Sunday when her car was hit in a head-on collision by a car driven by a drug-addicted driver. Alison Regan, 25, who was a special needs teacher at the Boston Higashi School in Randolph, died when a truck driven by Eric Lum, 29, of Randolph struck her car head on. She died in the collision. Police found Regan on Route 28 on the Quincy-Milton line still belted into her 1989 Oldsmobile Cutlass, bleeding profusely from her head. The car’s roof had caved in and no air bags had deployed, according to investigators. The school released a statement Monday saying it was “deeply shocked and saddened” by her death. I’m sure they are, as I’m sure are many others who knew Ms. Regan.

The defendant, Eric Lum, 29, of Randolph, appeared in Quincy District Court yesterday and pled not guilty to Massachusetts motor vehicle homicide and other related Massachusetts drug charges and Massachusetts vehicular charges. Lum was ordered held on $100,000 bail. State police and prosecutors said the 29-year-old Randolph man was driving a stolen SUV that crossed the center line of Route 28 just after midnight on Sunday and slammed head-on into a car driven by Ms. Regan. State troopers reported finding a bent, burnt spoon coated with a “brown oily residue” and a syringe in the wreck of the Ford Explorer Lum allegedly stole from his grandfather Walter Seyfert, 82. Though Lum denied using or injecting heroin prior to the crash, the defendant’s father, Ronald Lurn, 55 referred to him as “a long-term junkie,” and said the 210-pound stock car-racing enthusiast has been addicted to heroin for more than seven years.

After his son’s arrest and arraignment, the elder Lum told reporters, “”For the Regans, it’s horrible. For us, there’s some salvation that he won’t end up dead. “You think of a heroin addict as a bum in the street. That’s not always the case. We’ve done everything we could from being overbearing, to too lenient, to enablers.” Shockingly, the defendant’s grandmother – the wife of the defendant’s grandfather from whom the defendant reportedly stole the truck that killed Ms. Regan – had something different to say: “He’s a good boy,” Florence Seyfert, 81, insisted of her grandson yesterday as she left his arraignment, pushing past reporters. To make matters even worse, the defendant, according to police, fled into nearby woods after the crash. When police apprehended him about an hour later, he reportedly said that he “didn’t think it was fair” he could be jailed, state police allege.

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