Ukrainian truck driver who killed 7 motorcyclists faces deportation; motor vehicle head resigns for failing to terminate his license
ICE has reportedly requested details from his 2017 heroin and cocaine convictions, according to court filings. He was also stopped on suspicion of drunk driving on May 11 in East Windsor, Connecticut and failed a sobriety test
The head of the Massachusetts motor vehicle division has resigned for failing to terminate the commercial driving license of 23-year-old pick-up driver Volodymyr Zhukovskyy, who fatally crashed into seven motorcyclists in a fiery collision in New Hampshire on Friday, June 21.
The Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) also filed an immigration detainer with the Coos County Sheriff to proceed with his possible removal after he is freed from detention, confirmed the Boston Herald.
The publication reported that Zhukovskyy's father, who is also named Volodymyr Zhukovskyy, said his son had just recently attained a United States green card. "I'm sorry for the families," he said.
ICE has also reportedly requested details from his 2017 heroin and cocaine convictions, according to court filings.
He was also stopped on suspicion of drunk driving on May 11 in East Windsor, Connecticut, and failed a sobriety test. He had another drunk driving charge in 2013 in Westfield, Massachusetts. His license had been suspended for 210 days and he was on probation for one year.
In charging documents, prosecutors also claim that the crash was caused by Zhukovoskyy driving "erratically and across the double-yellow centerline, thereby causing a collision."
He has been charged with seven counts of negligent homicide. Jury selection is scheduled to begin November 8, with the trial running through December.
Those who died in the horrific crash were identified as Albert Mazza (49) of Lee, New Hampshire; Desma Oakes (42) of Concord, New Hampshire; Michael Ferazzi (62) of Contoocook; Aaron Perry (45) of Farmington, New Hampshire; Joanne and Edward Corr (both 58) of Lakeville, Massachusetts; and Daniel Pereira (58) of Riverside, Rhode Island. They belonged to the Jarheads Motorcycle Club, which was made up of active duty or honorably discharged Marines and FMF Corpsmen. Responding officers at the scene found their bodies strewn on the grass with their bikes completely totaled and in flames.
A petition has been started to raise money to support the family of the deceased. "Our pack was struck by an oncoming vehicle and we lost 5 patch holders and 2 supporters, and many others are injured," the petition says, "Our club and the families are going to need help and we cannot do it alone." $450,215 has been raised so far, within three days.
Manny Ribeiro and his wife Valerie, who were riding in front of the group at the time of the crash narrated the incidents of the day to Associated Press. "At that point, we just tried to figure out who needed help and got to work. There was debris everywhere and the truck was on fire. I was just looking for survivors, familiar faces and trying to find out who I had lost and… trying to help the living."
Ribero was riding along with club president Albert Mazza, who died in the crash. "It was just an explosion… with parts and everything flying through the air," he said. "He turned hard left into us and took out pretty much everyone behind me. The truck and trailer stayed attached and that is why it was so devastating… because the trailer was attached and it was such a big trailer, it was like a whip. It just cleaned us out."