By: Associated Press
June 11, 2014 - 1:20 pm
NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. (AP) -- The truck driver charged in the fatal highway crash that also injured comedian Tracy Morgan and several other people has pleaded not guilty at an initial court appearance.
Kevin Roper appeared in state court in New Brunswick on Wednesday to face death by auto and assault by auto charges. A judge kept his bail at $50,000.
Roper was driving a Wal-Mart truck early Saturday when he allegedly swerved to avoid slowed traffic on the New Jersey Turnpike and plowed into Morgan's limo.
The 45-year-old Morgan suffered broken ribs and a broken leg. His friend and fellow comedian James McNair was killed, and two other passengers were seriously injured.
Morgan underwent surgery for his broken leg and was in critical but stable condition Tuesday at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital.
TRENTON, N.J. (AP) -- The Wal-Mart truck driver from Jonesboro, Georgia, accused of triggering a crash in New Jersey that critically injured Tracy Morgan and killed another comedian had not slept for more than 24 hours.
The information about 35-year-old Kevin Roper's lack of sleep is contained in a criminal complaint.
A court administrator says Roper will face an initial court appearance on Wednesday.
Roper has been charged with death by auto and four counts of assault by auto.
Authorities say Roper apparently failed to slow for traffic early Saturday and swerved to avoid a crash. His rig smashed into the back of Morgan's Mercedes limo bus, killing comedian James "Jimmy Mack" McNair.
Morgan's publicist says the 45-year-old actor and comedian remained in critical condition and was "more responsive."