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Tractor-Trailer Driver Charged With Evidence Tampering In Fatal I-80 Crash

April 15, 2013

The New Jersey man who was towing a trailer with no rear lights and three flat tires when he was hit from behind by a minivan in a crash that killed the other vehicle’s driver, has been charged with tampering with evidence for allegedly modifying the trailer while police were beginning their investigation into the crash.

State Police say 53 year-old Wilfredo Suarez, from Clifton, New Jersey, is also charged with several other counts including reckless driving, operating unsafe equipment and driving an unregistered vehicle.

55 year-old Michael Holder, from Lansing, Michigan, died when his minivan slammed into the back of the Suarez tractor-trailer.  The incident occurred around 3:30 AM Wednesday morning on the eastbound lanes of Interstate 80 between the Grove City and Barkeyville exits.  Troopers say Suarez was traveling under 35 miles per hour.

Suarez reportedly had not stopped his rig because he was trying to save money on repairs by reaching a garage nearly fifty miles away.  Accident investigators say they were conducting interviews with other first-responders and potential witnesses when Suarez replaced his malfunctioning tailights and tossed the damaged lights over an embankment.

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