NEW BRUNSWICK – Last week, a grand jury indicted three Rahway men who were allegedly involved in a street-racing crash in Woodbridge that critically injured an Edison man last March, authorities said.
Driver Clifford Cooley and his two passengers, Brandon Bullock and David Colvin II, are charged with fleeing the scene of a four-car crash at the intersection of Route 1 and Avenel Street, officials said. The defendants are also accused of lying to police about being involved in the crash, despite being tied to the scene by forensic evidence, officials said.
Cooley faces the most serious charges, including aggravated assault, three counts of assault by auto and causing serious bodily injury while driving with a suspended license, authorities said. The 27-year-old is also accused of being over the legal limit for blood alcohol concentration at the time of the collision.
According to authorities, the three men were riding in a 2006 Scion racing a Honda Civic on Route 1 at speeds well over the 50 mph limit at 9 p.m. on March 23. The Scion approached the intersection and hit a 1993 Toyota Corolla, which was turning right onto Avenel Street, officials said.
The Scion then rear-ended a 2004 Dodge Stratus in the center northbound lane of Route 1, sending it into and over the center concrete median, authorities said. The Dodge landed on the roof of a 1998 Toyota Corolla, driven by Nicholas Phan-Tran, officials said. The Scion hit the concrete media and rolled on its roof and Cooley, Bullock and Colvin allegedly fled the car, authorities said.
Police apprehended Cooley and Bullock at the intersection of Avenel and Madison streets shortly after the crash. Phan-Tran, 21, was transported by helicopter to University Hospital in Newark. To date, he has not regained consciousness and is “in a vegetative state” at the JFK Hartwyck facility in Edison, authorities said.
Cooley could spend up to 10 years in prison if he is convicted on the aggravated assault charge alone.
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