TAUNTON, Mass. (WPRI) — The New Bedford man accused of causing a deadly crash in Taunton over the weekend appeared in court Monday morning.
Fred Moreira, 35, of New Bedford, is facing numerous charges, including vehicular homicide and operating under the influence of liquor.
Moreira is accused of crashing his car into two motorcycles early Saturday morning, killing 30-year-old Tyler Moniz and critically wounding another 39-year-old man.
The surviving victim was rushed to Rhode Island Hospital with life-threatening injuries. His mother voiced her frustration in court during Moreira’s arraignment.
“He needs to rot in hell for what he did to my son and his friend,” she said. “[My son] went through two surgeries … it’s going to be months before he walks. It’s going to be a year before he’s up and able to do anything. He might not be able to work after this.”
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Tears rolled down Moreira’s face as prosecutors revealed his blood alcohol content (BAC) was .17 — more than two times the legal limit. Prosecutors said officers also found an open nip bottle and vape pen inside his car at the time of the crash.
Moreira’s attorney Jason Maloney said the crash was an accident, adding that his client remained on scene and was cooperative throughout the investigation.
Maloney also argued there’s no evidence that Moreira was driving erratically, noting he was on the right side of the road and had his flashers on.
“Mr. Moreira expresses sympathy and sorrow to what happened this Saturday, to the family and victims of this tragedy in question,” Maloney said. “I would suggest that tragedy does not equal guilt, and I’m confident that when all the facts present themselves, there will be a different narrative that presents itself in court.”
Prosecutors said Moreira was out on personal recognizance for a domestic assault charge in New Bedford at the time of the crash.
Moreira was ordered held without bail for up to 90 days for violating the conditions of his release. He’s due back in court next month.