A Ramapo College student will make his first appearance in court on Nov. 12 after being charged with drunk driving shortly after he was involved in an on-campus accident that injured two other students.
The student, 20-year-old Douglas Hervey, was charged with two counts of assault by motor vehicle, driving while under the influence, reckless driving, failure to keep right and underage person operating a motor vehicle after consuming alcohol, according to NJ.com.
Officials said Hervey, from West Milford, was driving two of his friends on Woods Road behind the Village apartments when his Honda Civic veered into oncoming traffic at 12:11 a.m., hitting a Ford Edge. The driver of the Ford Edge was another Ramapo student but was not injured in the crash since the airbag was deployed as a result of the accident, Mahwah Police Chief Jim Batelli said.
The two passengers in Hervey's car, a 20-year-old Ramapo student from Mahwah and a 21-year-old student from Sparta, were on the ground with "moderate" injuries when police arrived, officials explained, surrounded by "a large gathering of students" at the site.
One student was taken to Hackensack University Medical Center and the other to Good Samaritan Hospital in Suffern, N.Y., both via ambulance, police said. A medevac helicopter was on standby, but the request was canceled after both students' injuries were determined not to be critical in nature, police said.
According to NJ.com, Hervey refused medical attention at the scene and was arrested after police officers suspected he was under the influence at the time of the crash.
President Peter Mercer sent out an open letter to the community yesterday in response to this incident and other issues of student conduct on Halloween night and earlier in October.
"Fortunately, nobody was killed and it is equally fortunate that none of the students who have been so intoxicated this semester as to warrant being transported to the hospital has suffered serious injury or death," Mercer wrote. "I am very concerned that continuing to engage in alcohol-related, high-risk activities will eventually lead to tragic results."
Mercer pointed to the College's Code of Conduct and Guide to Community Living, which outlines expectations for student behavior. He also asked for feedback and suggestions as ways to reach a compromise.
"I cannot and will not simply turn a blind eye to behavior that is selfish, illegal and likely to lead to serious injury or worse," he continued. "I care too much for the welfare of Ramapo's students to sit by and just hope that everything will work out."