Driver in crash that injured Tracy Morgan, killed comedian will seek dismissal in court

NEWARK, N.J. -- The truck driver who slammed into a limo carrying Tracy Morgan, killing one man and severely injuring the comedian, will ask a judge next week to throw out criminal charges against him.

See Full Article

Kevin Roper was driving a Wal-Mart truck in June 2014 when he crashed into Morgan's limo van. The former "30 Rock" and "Saturday Night Live" star suffered brain trauma, broken ribs and a broken leg, and his friend James McNair was killed. Two other passengers also suffered serious injuries.

Within days, Roper was charged in state court with one count of death by auto and four counts of assault by auto, though as of Friday he hadn't been indicted, said his attorney, David Glassman.

Glassman told The Associated Press he will ask a judge in Middlesex County on Tuesday to dismiss the case because Roper is unable to get a fair trial because of negative publicity surrounding Morgan's federal lawsuit against Wal-Mart.

Morgan settled with Wal-Mart this summer for an undisclosed amount. Roper wasn't a defendant in that lawsuit, but he filed motions in federal court seeking to have it delayed until after his criminal case was resolved. Those motions were rejected.

"Civil cases are routinely stayed for criminal cases to proceed," Glassman said in an email. "Had that occurred and a stay issued in the civil case, a tsunami of negative pretrial publicity would have been avoided and Roper's right to a fair trial would have been preserved."

Glassman also criticized the Middlesex County prosecutor's office for not stepping in and seeking a stay in the federal lawsuit.

"A prosecutor can't stand by while this occurs, and then seek to cash in by way of a speedy plea or conviction," he said.

A spokesman for the Middlesex County prosecutor's office did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment Friday.

A National Transportation Safety Board investigation concluded in August that Roper hadn't slept during the previous 28 hours and failed to slow down immediately before the crash, despite posted warning signs on the New Jersey Turnpike in Cranbury.

The board also said the failure of Morgan and other passengers in the limo van to wear seat belts and adjust headrests contributed to the severity of their injuries.

Glassman told the AP at the time the report was released that the NTSB did not have all the facts since it did not speak to Roper. He called the assertion that Roper had gone without sleep for more than 28 hours "factually wrong."



Advertisements

Latest Entertainment News

  • ’Lego Batman’ conquers ’The Great Wall’ for top box office spot

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    NEW YORK — “The Great Wall” was a hit in China. In North America, it was a dud. The most expensive film ever made in China and with a budget of $150 million, “The Great Wall” was intended to prove that the world’s no. Source
  • Vin Diesel: Actor, director...singer?

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    Vin Diesel has released an unexpected duet with Selena Gomez on Facebook. The 24-year-old star dropped her new track, It Ain’t Me, on Thursday, and it has already been remixed by her collaborator, Norwegian DJ Kygo, into an unlikely single featuring The Fast and Furious actor. Source
  • Syria's White Helmets members to attend Academy Awards

    Entertainment CBC News
    Two members of Syria's White Helmets humanitarian organization, which is the subject of an Academy Award-nominated film, are set to attend the Oscars Feb. 26 in Los Angeles. The head of the group, Raed Saleh, and the cinematographer behind the short film, Khaled Khatib, have received U.S. Source
  • Tom Holland burnt 'Avengers: Infinity War' script to prevent leaks

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    Tom Holland has set fire to his Avengers: Infinity War script in an effort to stop movie spoilers from leaking. The 20-year-old British actor confessed he had forgotten to hand in his script to Marvel producers following a recent shoot, so instead took a more extreme approach to making sure no secrets from the script were stolen. Source
  • Rosie O'Donnell will not play Steve Bannon on SNL

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    Rosie O’Donnell has confirmed she will not appear as Steve Bannon on Saturday Night Live. The 54-year-old offered her services to impersonate U.S President Donald Trump’s chief strategist following Melissa McCarthy’s recent stint as White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer on the comedy sketch show. Source
  • 'Lego Batman' stays No. 1, conquers 'The Great Wall'

    Entertainment CTV News
    NEW YORK -- "The Lego Batman Movie" commanded the Presidents Day weekend box office, staying No. 1 for the second straight week, while the China-focused "The Great Wall" failed to show much muscle in North America. Source
  • Brian Mulroney sings for Donald Trump

    Entertainment CBC News
    Former Canadian Prime Minister Brian Mulroney, attending a fundraising gala with Donald Trump, was called to the stage Saturday night to sing a tune he performed alongside another U.S. president more than 30 years ago. Music producer David Foster said Mulroney could sing either Danny Boy or When Irish Eyes Are Smiling, and the man who was prime minister from 1984 to 1993 chose the latter, which he, Ronald Reagan and others sang in 1985 at what became known as the Shamrock Summit in Quebec…
  • James Brown's 'Funky Drummer' Clyde Stubblefield dead at 73

    Entertainment CBC News
    Clyde Stubblefield, a drummer for James Brown who created one of the most widely sampled drum breaks ever, died Saturday. He was 73. His wife, Jody Hannon, told The Associated Press that Stubblefield died of kidney failure at a Madison, Wisconsin, hospital around noon. Source
  • Remembering Stuart: What everyday act of an ordinary person in your community do you think should be honoured?

    Entertainment CBC News
    Sunday on Cross Country Checkup: remembering Stuart Long-time radio storyteller and journalist, Stuart McLean died on Wednesday after a long battle with melanoma cancer. McLean welcomed listeners every Sunday into the world of The Vinyl Cafe, a radio program of essays, short stories and music, with his magnanimous voice and his keen ability to connect with strangers. Source
  • Shia LaBeouf takes anti-Trump performance to New Mexico

    Entertainment CTV News
    ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - Actor Shia LaBeouf has brought a performance-art piece against President Donald Trump to New Mexico's largest city. The Albuquerque Journal reports that LaBeouf, along with two other artists, brought on Saturday a 24-hour live-streaming camera mounted to a wall with the message in block letters: "He will not divide us," referring to Trump. Source