Long record for driver involved in deadly Whitman accident

The driver involved in Sunday’s fatal crash has a four-page driving record in Massachusetts, and just last year was required to take a driver retraining course based on that record.

Richard C. Brown of 21 Milk St., Attleboro, was the driver of the Dodge Ram that struck and killed Edward W. Cordwell Jr., and seriously injured a 4-year-old girl on her bike Sunday afternoon, police said.

 The little girl’s pink bike, which had training wheels and a purple Dora the Explorer backup on the handlebars, was found wedged underneath Brown’s truck at the Route 27 accident.

As of Monday afternoon, the little girl identified as Kiera through her mother’s Facebook page was in Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston in serious but stable condition, Fire Department officials said. Police say Cordwell was the boyfriend of the little girl’s mother.

Brown had not been charged in connection with the crash, as of early Monday evening. The police chief, according to Sgt. Andrew Stafford, was at a meeting Monday afternoon with the Plymouth County district attorney, “discussing potential charges,” against the driver.

 A spokesperson for the Plymouth County DA’s office said charges are not pending at this time, but the crash is under investigation.Whitman Police Chief Scott Benton said investigators are in the process of getting a warrant to search Brown’s cell phone.

“The investigation is going to discover whether we should press charges, (whether) we can, and what those charges will be,” Deputy Chief Timothy Hanlon said.

One witness told The Enterprise that Brown, the driver of the Dodge Ram, drove around a vehicle that had stopped for Cordwell and the little girl to cross.

“We heard that as well,” Hanlon said, “but part of what’s holding up the investigation is we are getting differing witness accounts.”

 Meanwhile, the Registry of Motor Vehicles on Monday suspended Brown’s license “indefinitely,” a spokesperson said, under the Fatal Preliminary provision in Massachusetts state laws. Brown’s truck had firefighter license plates, which according to the RMV spokesperson are charity plates and can be purchased by anyone.

Fire Chief Timothy Grenno, who lives across the street from the accident scene and was the first responder on the scene, said Brown never identified himself as a firefighter.

Brown did not return a call to his house in Attleboro on Monday. Incidents on his driving record stem back to 1983. The record indicated he was responsible for multiple incidents, include speeding and lane violations throughout several local towns. He was also found to be at fault for accidents in Middleboro in 2001, in Weymouth in 1994, and in Quincy in both 1993 and 1983.

 A year ago this week, Brown underwent a driver retraining course, required because Brown had three marks on his license record all within that year. Because he took that test, Brown was able to keep his license.

Source: Amy Carboneau. Enterprise News

Personal Injury

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