FREEHOLD – A South Jersey man was sentenced to 10 years in state prison for his role in an April 2014 fatal motor vehicle collision that took the life of a 21-year-old Howell women, announced Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher J. Gramiccioni.
Edwin Martinez, 24, of Camden, was sentenced Friday to a term of 10 years in a New Jersey state prison, subject to the provisions of the “No Early Release Act” (NERA) requiring that he must serve 85 percent of any sentence imposed prior to becoming eligible for parole on the Vehicular Homicide. He also received a three year concurrent sentence on the Assault by Auto. Monmouth County Superior Court Judge Joseph W. Oxley imposed the sentence pursuant to a negotiated plea. Martinez also lost his driver’s license for five years.
Martinez pleaded guilty in March to first degree Vehicular Homicide in a School Zone, third degree Assault by Auto, and a motor vehicle summons for Driving While Intoxicated before Judge Oxley. In compliance with the plea agreement, the State dismissed the remaining counts of the Indictment that remained against Martinez.
The fatal collision occurred shortly after 2 a.m. on April 20, 2014 at the intersection of 8th Avenue and Route 35 in Belmar. A joint investigation by the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office, Monmouth County Serious Collision Analysis Response Team (SCART) and the Belmar Police Department revealed Martinez was the driver of a Honda Civic, where the victim was a passenger.
Prior to the fatal crash, the victim arrived at Connolly Station, located on 8th Avenue in Belmar, to pick up Martinez. Instead of getting into the passenger side and allowing the victim to drive, Martinez entered the driver’s side door and sped away from the bar on 8th Avenue toward Route 35. As Martinez approached the intersection at 8th Avenue and Route 35, he ignored the red traffic light, entering Route 35 where he lost control of the car causing the victim, his passenger, to be ejected from the car sending her into the Shark River.
First responders located the victim, removed her from the river and transported her to Jersey Shore University Medical Center, where she eventually succumbed to her injuries. Martinez was also transported to Jersey Shore University Medical Center to be treated for injuries he sustained.
A blood sample taken from Martinez after the crash revealed his Blood Alcohol Concentration was .207 percent, more than two-and-a-half times the legal limit in New Jersey.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant Prosecutor Meghan Doyle. Martinez is represented by John Klamo, Esq., of Cherry Hill.
# # #