Driver tests positive for drugs after crash

Patrick Doerr. (March 8, 2014)
Patrick Doerr. (March 8, 2014)

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Court records show a driver tested positive for cocaine and opiates after causing a deadly crash in Kent County.

Patrick Doerr, 57, plead no contest Friday morning to two misdemeanor charges in the crash.

The judge told Doerr he’s responsible for the death of two men who should have never died like the way they did.

Police reports were read in court detailing what happened on September 10, 2013, in Plainfield Township when Doerr caused a chain reaction crash involving seven vehicles.

Witnesses told police they saw Doerr drive by with his head resting on his headrest and they weren’t sure whether he was awake.

They told police he never once slowed or braked as he approached a traffic backup on southbound US-131 near 10 Mile Road in Plainfield Township.

John Pomeroy, 49, and William Kochis, 30, both from the Traverse City area died in the crash.

Police said Doerr refused a voluntary blood test at the hospital and asked for an attorney. But a urine screening revealed he tested positive for cocaine and opiates.

The judge says his actions resulted in a devastating loss for the victims’ families.

“It is I’m sure undoubtedly different for you to sit there and recognize you are responsible for the death of two men that never, ever, ever should have died like that,” said Judge Sara Smolenski.

Beginning Friday, Doerr can’t drive. His license will be taken away for a year.

A sentencing date has not yet been set.

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