Driver gets 3+ years in prison after leaving crash that killed motorcyclist

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FALL RIVER, Mass. (WPRI) — After a jury convicted him in March, a Fall River man will serve three to four years in state prison for leaving the scene of a fatal crash.

Irvin Dominguez Cruz, 40, was convicted of motor vehicle homicide by negligent operation and leaving the scene of a collision with death resulting. He wasn’t sentenced until this week due to postponements related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Cruz was driving a rented box truck on the morning of June 14, 2018, when, as an eyewitness told police, he suddenly turned left from Highland Avenue to Courtney Street without signaling or braking.

He cut in front of motorcyclist Christopher Mills, 29, of Taunton, who couldn’t stop in time. He hit the truck at the rear passenger side wheels, leaving a dent in the box and damage to the rim, according to the office of Bristol County District Attorney Thomas M. Quinn III.

When questioned about the collision, Dominguez-Cruz told police he’d heard a bang, but thought it was the truck and kept driving.

Rescue crews responding to the scene rushed Mills to Rhode Island Hospital, where he succumbed to extensive injuries.

Dominguez-Cruz had turned left into the parking lot of his apartment complex before leaving the area again to take the truck to a storage lot in Stoughton. Upon parking, Dominguez-Cruz observed the damage and a dent in the box where Mills’s helmet had slammed into it, according to prosecutors.

However, as his boss gave him a ride home to Fall River, he made no mention of the truck damage or the collision.

When returning to the apartment complex, the defendant reported seeing the commotion surrounding the motorcycle on the ground, but did not identify himself to investigators. He told police he didn’t know what to do, so he went back home and discussed the matter with his wife before going to sleep.

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