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NJ.co reports that the 23-year-old Jersey City man charged with fatally striking two teenagers Saturday night was driving at nearly three times the speed limit, with a suspended license, authorities said today.

Eric Patterson, 23, is charged with two counts of death by auto, a single count of assault by auto, speeding, reckless driving and driving with a suspended license, said Hudson County Prosecutor Esther Suarez, who announced the charges at a press conference in North Bergen Monday afternoon.

Patterson was arrested Saturday night at the scene in North Bergen, just over the border from Union City. Police say evidence indicates Patterson was driving 74 miles per hour on Kennedy Boulevard, where the speed limit is 25 mph, when he swerved to avoid cars stopped at a red light at the intersection with 26th Street, crossed over two lanes, jumped the curb and struck Bryan Rodriguez, 17, and Noel Herrera, 16, who were both killed.

Authorities say a third teen, Manuel Sanchez, 16, of Union City, was also struck, but survived, and is now hospitalized in stable condition.

North Bergen Police Chief Robert Dowd and Chief Richard Molinari both said it was one of the worst accidents they had seen in their careers. The chiefs, the prosecutor and local officials pleaded with the public to slow down.

“It’s a matter of personal responsibility,” Suarez said. “It is a privilege to get behind the wheel of an automobile.”

Bryan Rodriquez’s father, Jorge Rodriguez, 47, said his son meant everything to him.

“Lloro y lloro,” Rodriguez said in Spanish, during a brief telephone interview on Monday. “I cry and cry.”

“It hurts that I don’t have him,” Rodriguez added. “I miss everything about him.”

Rodriguez said the parents of Noel Herrera had been to his house to commiserate, and that the families were lending each other support in the wake of their shared tragedy.

Rodriguez was a freshman at Union City High School, and Herrera attended Cliffside Park Middle School. A friend of their families has started a fundraiser to help pay for their funerals.

A makeshift memorial to the site sprang up at the site of the crash, where mourners lit candles, left flowers and wrote messages to Rodriguez and Herrera.

 

North Bergen Fatal Crash

 

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When you contact our office, we will immediately set up a free, confidential appointment where you will meet an attorney who will listen to you and evaluate your case.  We have conveniently located offices in Perth AmboyNew BrunswickJersey CityRoselle and East Orange. We understand traumatic brain injuries, neck injuries, back injuries and other medical problems caused by accidents and the problems that they can cause in your daily life.  Our law firm will always work to make sure you are compensated fairly.

Whether you were a pedestrian, a bicyclist, a shopper in a store, or the occupant of train, or car, motorcycle, boat or any motor vehicle, or have been hurt at an amusement park or at your workplace, bitten by a dog or injured in a fall down accident, you should immediately call one of the experienced personal injury attorneys at

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