Haverhill Teen Accused In Deadly Texting Crash Faces Judge

By Peg Rusconi, WBZ-TV

HAVERHILL (CBS) – The case against 17-year old Aaron Deveau is unlike any other in Essex County. Deveau faces charges in a deadly car crash, that happened, prosecutors say, while he was texting behind the wheel.

WBZ-TV’s Peg Rusconi reports

It happened in February on River Road in Haverhill. Police records say Deveau was driving home from work in the afternoon when he crossed the center line and hit 55-year old Donald Bowley’s car head on.

The report says Deveau told police he was tired, briefly looked away from the road, thought he saw brake lights in front of him and swerved. But prosecutors say Deveau was texting.

Bowley, a father and Army veteran from New Hampshire, died at the hospital. His passenger survived.

“Aaron Deveau and his family would like to pass forward their condolences to the Bowley family. It’s a difficult time for both them and us,” said attorney Joe Lussier.

Motor vehicle homicide is the most serious charge Deveau faces, carrying a punishment of up to tw0-and-a-half years in the house of corrections. Most of the other charges lodged against Deveau involve texting while driving.

The state law banning texting while driving went into effect just six months ago. A first time texting offense carries a $100 fine. Drivers who are under 18 can also lose their license for 60 days.

A Haverhill district court clerk will decide next week if there’s enough evidence to go forward with the case.

  • karen s

    no brainer. this has to go to trial, and the max jail time must be imposed. i gag on the attorney’s offering condolences. better that he said nothing. a man is dead. texting and driving is illegal junior. man up. all you folks on the cellphones and driving you are in the same pool as this kid. you know its wrong and yet you continue to put yourself above the law. shame on you all. sorry doesn’t cut it.

  • A T Burbine

    A man is dead…yes. But now two live should be over because of a horrible mistake? I doubt even Mr. Bowley’s family would agree. More could be served if that young man were to go to schools…tell his story and implore kids not to text and drive. Lives may be saved rather than two lost.

    • Frank

      He can do that once he has served his time. How in the world are people supposed to learn from there mistakes if there are no consequences. Why should we spend so much taxpayers money on the people who come up with these laws if we aren’t even going to punish people for breaking them. A T Burbine, This kid took another persons life, someones father, brother, possibly Grandfather and you want to just let the kid walk and make him tell his story? you make me sick. This kid is lucky that the maximum punishment is only 2 and a half years in the house of corrections, when he should be tried as an adult and get 2 and a half years in prison. This kid took another persons life and then even had the audacity to lie about it, throw the book at him

  • fred fred the rubberhead

    There should be NO cell phone use by any operator of a vehicle. No Blue Tooth, Head Set, nothing. You all act like you are special, when you are pukes with little income and/or brains. Get over yourselves losers.

  • emom

    This kid took his EYES of the road , he looked away from the road, He was not paying attention to the road in front of him. Thios is what caused the accident, lack of paying attention, NOT talking on the phone, Talking your eyes off the road is a major mistake, This is a big problem with drivers, they look away for many reasons, this is not your house where you can do that , you are operating a vehicle a weapon. EYES are to be on the road at all times.. There is no need to look at your phone for a text, never. If you must then wait till you are fully stopped…. Holding your phone while talking is just as bad. You close of your feild of view by holding up your arm …. Smoking in your car is a distraction, drinking your coffee, drinking out of a can or bottle while driving, eating a sub of slice of pizza, looking in your back seat at your screaming child, or looking at your passenger in the front seat to talk to… Those are all makor distractions. Try watching tv sitcoms and see them do that ,, Yeah I know its not real stuff , but what they do in those cars on those shows is real , and many folks copy such stuff. we see videos of these things all the time and many times a cell phone was not involved. Point is there are all kinds of distractions, more worse than others, I could argue that a blue tooth is far safer than holding a cell to your ear , but why bother , most have their belief, some know the facts, I have choice to stay safer with a bluetooth, and have done so for over 10 years, set my phone up with certain rings so I know who is calling so I can tell if its needed to answer or not. If a text should come in , I do not respond till I am safe to do so , but the phone is set up to speak to me what the text says thru the blue tooth. that way I can hear it and answer later. Its no different than listening to a book on tape , or the radio. and its not differnt than talking to a passenger in the front seat> but I only have to touch a button if I so choice to talk. that way I neve rhave to handle the phone if I need to answer a call, and I only have 2 that I would answer if needed, One is a necesity. for medical purposes, on a family memeber. I have been safe at all times and maintain my eyes on the road at al times it can be done but its not for all. so many have no idea on how to multy task,, But why bother proving it some just dont understand. but 10 years should be proof.

  • Michelle

    We love you and will forever miss! Tell Mom I said I love her too

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