Drivers hit 100 mph before fatal 5-car Tacony-Palmyra crash, cops say
Two Philadelphia men who sped across the Tacony-Palmyra Bridge at speeds of more than 100 mph on Dec. 28, causing a fatal five-car crash, have been charged with homicide.
Jonathan Ramos, 28, and Brandon Moore, 23, were driving west "without regard for the safety of other motorists," according to Burlington County Prosecutor Scott Coffina.
According to the criminal complaint, surveillance video shows Moore's 2018 Dodge Charger waiting until Ramos' 2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee passed the toll plaza.
Both vehicles sped and made lane changes into opposing traffic, according to the prosecutor.
Bridge surveillance shows Moore reaching 112 mph and striking the side of Ramos' Jeep, which had reached 106 mph. Moore's Charger then hit a Honda Civic, killing its driver, Gerardo Francisco Perez Martinez, 35, of Camden.
The speed limit on the bridge is 45 mph with one lane of traffic westbound and two lanes eastbound.
Prosecutors did not accuse the drivers of racing or say whether Moore and Ramos know each other.
One witness told police that the driver of the Charger was pulled along the side of the road after the toll plaza and was "making noise with his car" as though he was going to race.
Another witness told police that the Jeep and Charger appeared to be racing as they both passed him on the bridge, according to the complaint. Other witnesses said they heard loud engine noise.
According to the complaint, Moore was driving his 17-year-old brother-in-law and son from the CarMax auto dealership in Maple Shade, where he had left his car for a repair.
Moore told investigators he pulled over after the toll plaza to wait for his wife who was driving a separate vehicle when he was passed by a Jeep that he had seen driving erratically on Route 73, according to the complaint.
Moore said he hit the Jeep when it braked suddenly. He then tried to swerve around the Jeep, hitting the Honda.
Ramos got out of his Jeep and asked one of the witnesses to call his phone to help find it before walking away from the crash, according to the complaint. Police later found Ramos’ phone inside his car. Although the Jeep was registered to a different person, investigators said they were able to deduce that it was Ramos was behind the wheel.
Ramos turned himself into prosecutors on Tuesday in Mount Holly accompanied by his lawyer. He is being held at the Burlington County Jail and has a detention hearing scheduled for Friday. Ramos was charged with second-degree vehicular homicide, second-degree leaving the scene of a fatal accident, third-degree causing death while driving with a suspended license and third-degree endangering an injured victim by leaving the scene without rendering aid.
Moore was arrested on Jan. 22 and released following a first appearance in Superior Court. He was charged with second-degree vehicular homicide and and two counts of third-degree endangering the welfare of a child.