Driver Who Used Marijuana Charged With Vehicular Homicide

Danielle Bowker (Photo courtesy Ocean County Jail)

MANCHESTER – Police have charged a woman with Vehicular Homicide after she allegedly caused a crash that killed two people.

Danielle Bowker, 30, of Toms River, was charged with two counts of Vehicular Homicide, two counts of Strict Liability Vehicular Homicide, two counts of Assault by Auto, and Driving While Intoxicated.

The crash took place at around 7:15 a.m. on March 29 near the intersection of Whitesville Road and Route 571.

Police said that Bowker’s Honda Civic was heading west on 571, but didn’t maintain her lane while negotiating a right-hand curve.

The Civic hit a pick-up truck owned by the New Jersey Department of Transportation. It was being driven east on 571 by Eduardo Rivera, 30, of Hamilton Township. Daniel Septor, 26, of the Cream Ridge section of Upper Freehold Township, was a passenger in the Ford F-550.

The pick-up lost control and hit a Toyota Camry and a Toyota Corolla. The drivers of these two cars – Michael Sadis, 48, of Toms River, and Paul Lamberti, 58, also of Toms River – died from their injuries.
Police had blood drawn from Bowker while she was recuperating from the crash at Community Medical Center in Toms River. The test indicated that she had used marijuana recently.

The State’s psychopharmacologist rendered an opinion that at the time of the crash, Bowker’s faculties were impaired due to the effects of marijuana intoxication, and that she could not safely operate a motor vehicle, police said.

Ocean County Prosecutor Bradley D. Billhimer commended the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Vehicular Homicide Unit, Manchester Township Police Department, Ocean County Sheriff’s Office Crime Scene Investigation Unit, Lakewood Township Police Department, and Ocean County Medical Examiner’s Office, for their combined and cooperative efforts in connection with this investigation.

Charges are merely accusations until proven in a court of law.