Mass RMV Chief Resigns Over NH Bike Tragedy
The head of the Massachusetts motor vehicle division has resigned after her agency failed to terminate the commercial driving license of a man whose collision with a group of motorcyclists on a rural New Hampshire road left seven bikers dead.
The Berkshire Eagle reports Volodymyr Zhukovskyy, 23, pleaded not guilty Tuesday to seven counts of negligent homicide. Dalton resident Josh Morin was among three people injured in the crash.
Massachusetts Department of Transportation Secretary and CEO Stephanie Pollack said in a statement that the state Registry of Motor Vehicles failed to act on information provided by the Connecticut Department of Motor Vehicles about a drunken driving arrest involving Zhukovskyy.
Pollack said the arrest should have cost him his commercial driving license. As a result, she accepted the resignation of Erin Deveney.
Manny Ribeiro, who survived the crash, said the resignation was just one of many revelations about the driver that indicated the crash could have been prevented. But Ribeiro said it also felt "like someone was running around from the problem."
Connecticut prosecutors said Zhukovskyy was arrested May 11 in a Walmart parking lot in East Windsor after failing a sobriety test. Zhukovskyy's lawyer in that case, John O'Brien, said he denies being intoxicated and will fight the charge.
Zhukovskyy, a driver for a transport company who has a history of traffic arrests, was ordered Tuesday to remain in preventive detention, with a judge saying his driving record poses a potential danger to the public and himself.