The Georgia truck driver accused of causing an accident that killed one man and left comedian and actor Tracy Morgan and three others injured made his first court appearance in the case this afternoon, USA Today reports.
"David Glassman, the attorney for Kevin Roper, a Wal-Mart truck driver, entered a plea of not guilty on his client's behalf before Superior Court Judge Bradley Ferencz in New Brunswick, N.J.," the story reports. "Roper has been charged with one count of vehicular homicide and assault by auto against four individuals, according to Assistant Prosecutor Sheree Pitchford."
Roper remained out of jail on $50,000 bail, and he and his attorney did not comment to onlookers after the arraignment.
"Under New Jersey law, a person can be charged with assault by auto if he or she causes injury after knowingly operating a vehicle after being awake for more than 24 hours," the story reports. "According to the criminal complaint, Roper was operating the truck 'without having slept for a period in excess of 24 hours resulting in a motor vehicle accident.'"
Comedian James "Jimmy Mack" McNair, a mentor to Morgan, was killed in the collision. He was 62.
"Four other passengers, including Morgan, were taken to Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital in New Brunswick. Morgan, 45, and Jeffrey Millea, 36, of Shelton, Conn., were airlifted to the hospital," the report notes. "Morgan, a New York City native, suffered broken leg bones, a broken nose and several broken ribs in the crash. He underwent surgery on his leg Sunday but contrary to rumors, it was not amputated, according to his publicist."
Morgan reportedly remains in critical but stable condition.
"Millea and fellow passenger Ardie Fuqua Jr., a comedian, both remain in critical condition at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, said Peter Haigney, hospital spokesman," the report adds. "A fifth passenger, comic Harris Stanton, was treated and released. Two others in the limo were unhurt, including the driver, Tyrone Gale."