HINGHAM, Mass. – The driver of an SUV that plowed into an Apple store on Monday, killing one person and injuring at least 19 more, told police his foot got stuck on the accelerator.
53-year-old Bradley Rein faced charges of motor vehicle homicide by reckless driving, a felony in Massachusetts, and reckless driving, a misdemeanor, in Hingham District Court on Tuesday. At his arraignment, bail was set at $100,000. He is not allowed to drive while the case is pending, and he must seek permission of the court to leave the state. He is due back in court Dec. 22.
“Though the outcome of this accident was horrific … It was just that. It was an accident,” Rein’s court-appointed lawyer, Alison King, said. “He was cooperative with police and was not under the influence of alcohol. … It’s just really unfortunate.”
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State Trooper Andrew Chiachio wrote in a police report that Rein said “his right foot became stuck on the accelerator” and “(Rein) used his left foot to try to brake, but was unable to stop the vehicle and crashed through the front of the Apple store.”
What do we know about the driver in fatal Apple store crash?
Chiachio said Rein told him he was at Derby Street Shops to repair a lens in his eyeglasses, which he was not wearing at the time of the crash. He was given an alcohol breath test at the police station, which registered a 0.00% blood alcohol level.
King said Rein, who has lived in Hingham for a year and has two children, has no connection to the store or any of the victims. He has no criminal record in Massachusetts. He was charged with drunken driving in Vermont several years ago, but that charge has been expunged.
Who are the crash victims?
Kevin Bradley, 65, of New Jersey, was killed in the crash at about 10:45 a.m. Monday. Police said Bradley was working outside when he was hit, and his body was found 10 to 15 feet inside the store. He was declared dead at the scene.
After crashing through the glass storefront, the SUV continued to the back wall of the store and trapped several people inside. The store entrance is about 30 feet from the parking lot.
“Most of (the victims) sustained serious bodily injury,” Assistant District Attorney David Cutshell said.
Plymouth County District Attorney Timothy Cruz said outside the courthouse Tuesday he didn’t know how fast the SUV was going, but did say people were walking on the sidewalk in front of the store when the crash occurred.
“There are a lot of questions, but I don’t have a lot of answers for you,” Cruz said.
“The Apple store is a very busy place,” he said. “It’s the Monday of a holiday week. I don’t know exactly how many people were in there. I’m sure we will find out. … We are going to go slow and steady with this, and get the information as we get it.”
Cruz praised Derby Street shoppers and employees for their quick work at the scene. “I think they saved a lot of lives,” he said.
Steve Murphy, the Hingham fire chief, said bystanders provided first aid to help the injured. Two people were taken to Boston hospitals in critical condition. No updates on their conditions had been provided at 7:50 a.m. Tuesday.
Dr. William Tollefsen, the emergency medical dervices and mobile integrated health care medical director for South Shore Health, told reporters that several victims arrived at the Weymouth hospital with life-threatening injuries. Others suffered head trauma, lower extremity injuries and mangled limbs.
Will the Hingham Apple store reopen?
Construction crews covered the front of the Apple store with plywood and painted it white. A small collection of flowers had been left nearby.
Apple announced Monday afternoon that the Hingham location would be closed indefinitely.
“We are devastated by the shocking events at Apple Derby Street today and the tragic loss of a professional who was onsite supporting recent construction at the store,” the company said. “Our hearts go out to our team members and customers who were injured and all of those who were affected by this terrible incident.”
Derby Street Shops in Hingham, is a collection of 64 stores and restaurants. The 4,000-square-foot Apple store is in the rear of the outdoor shopping plaza, next to Burton’s Grill. It opened in 2006.
Reporters Mary Whitfill, Joel Barnes and Fred Hanson and photographer Greg Derr contributed to this report.