“Piece of sh!t” driver arrested for 7 motorcycle deaths in New Hampshire
| Suspected heroin found at home; had DUI record
| Should these deaths be counted as part of the national opioid epidemic?
| By Mark Hayward, Jun 24, 2019
New Hampshire Union Leader – Packages containing suspected heroin residue were found in the home of the driver charged with killing seven motorcyclists Friday in the North Country, authorities said Monday.
Massachusetts State Police said the packages were discovered when its Violent Fugitive Apprehension Section and New Hampshire State police arrested Volodoymyr Zhukovskyy, 23, at his West Springfield home.
The packages will be tested for heroin, they said.
[Initial reports were that Zhukovskyy, who has an ethnically Russian name, was Russian. Later reports indicate that he is a native Ukrainian. We have updated our headline. – Editor]
“These people died and this piece of sh — was at home doing drugs”
Zhukovskyy faces seven counts of negligent homicide in connection with the Randolph crash on Friday evening that killed seven riders associated with Jarhead Motorcycle Club, a club for Marines and select Navy corpsmen.
Zhukovskyy made a brief court appearance in Massachusetts, where he waived extradition and was turned over to New Hampshire authorities.
He is scheduled to be arraigned Tuesday in Coos [CO-os] County Superior Court in Lancaster.
He wore a “Tommy Jeans” T-shirt and warm-up pants at the arraignment. His signed forms while in handcuffs and only answered questions posed by the judge. At least a half-dozen court bailiffs escorted him after the five-minute hearing.
Meanwhile, federal safety reports show that the Massachusetts company that Zhukovskyy drove for — Westfield Transport Inc. — has an out-of-service rate for drivers that is nearly four times the national average. Twice in the recent past, drivers were found with narcotics or amphetamines in their possession.
A man who answered the telephone at Zhukovskyy’s employer, Westfield Transport Inc., said Zhukovskyy had just started as a driver and was on his second trip for the company.
He only identified himself as “Damien” and did not speak long, but said he was disgusted with Zhukovskyy.
“These people died and this piece of sh — was at home doing drugs,” Damien said.
Zhukovskyy “came out of nowhere” to apply for the job, he said.
Head of Massachusetts RMV resigns amid fallout from deadly NH motorcycle crash
Jun 26, 2019
WCVB, BOSTON — The head of the Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles has resigned amid the fallout from a deadly crash in Randolph, New Hampshire, that killed seven people associated with a Marine motorcycle club.
Massachusetts Department of Transportation Secretary and CEO Stephanie Pollack said she has accepted the resignation of Registrar Erin Deveney.
The truck driver involved in the crash, 23-year-old Volodymyr Zhukovskyy, of West Springfield, has pleaded not guilty to seven counts of negligent homicide.
According to Pollack, the Massachusetts RMV did not act on information provided by the Connecticut Department of Motor Vehicles regarding a May 11 incident that should have triggered the termination of Zhukovskyy’s commercial driver’s license.
“The loss of life in any motor vehicle crash is a terrible tragedy and the massive toll this crash is taking on the families of the seven individuals who lost their lives, many of whom served this country, is impossible to comprehend,” Pollack said in a statement. “The Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles has a responsibility to enforce the laws governing safe operation of vehicles and carries out its mission to the best of its abilities.”
Zhukovskyy received a Massachusetts personal driving license on April 25, 2013, and received a Class A license, or CDL, on Aug. 3, 2018.
His driving record includes a violation for operating under the influence of liquor on June 26, 2013, and a disposition for that violation. He served suspensions and attended education classes for this violation, including a youth alcohol program, since he was under the age of 21 at the time.
Zhukovvsyy’s driving history did not have the number and type of violations that would have disqualified him under state and federal law from obtaining a Massachusetts CDL in August 2018 … Read more.