Heller Construction VP Dennis Frick was killed when a vehicle driven by Noah Reyes crash-landed on his company pickup truck. Credit: Carlos Ramirez / New Brunswick Today

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ—More than three weeks after a fatal crash killed a 65-year-old driver on Route 1, an 18-year-old man surrendered to authorities to face a charge of vehicular homicide.

Noah Reyes is the young man being held responsible for the March 6 crash that killed Dennis Frick. The Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office (MCPO) had kept Reyes’ identity secret from the public until recently.

Frick lived in Freehold and worked as a Vice President with Heller Construction, the owners of an industrial park just a couple miles away from the crash site.

The company also owns the Ford F-150 truck that Frick was driving when the Infiniti Q50 crash-landed on it. He was pronounced deceased at the scene of the crash.

The crash delayed traffic in both directions near the “Goodkind” bridges, a pair of highways named for the father and son who designed them a generation apart. The bridges connect Edison and New Brunswick and carry Route 1 over the Raritan River.

After evidence showing Reyes’ vehicle was speeding on the highway at 7:08am, authorities asked him to turn himself in to face the charge. Reyes did so on April 1.

The MCPO and New Brunswick Police Department (NBPD) and conducted an investigation that determined Reyes lost control of his vehicle while traveling southbound on the state highway, becoming airborne and ripping the top off of Frick’s truck upon landing on the northbound side of the highway.

Reyes survived and was “uninjured,” according to a joint statement issued by police and prosecutors.

The 2015 Infiniti driven by Reyes was allegedly traveling at 79 miles per hour “seconds before the crash,” according to the car’s “black box” that records such data, prosecutors said in their official complaint against Reyes, who was driving a vehicle owned by a Milltown man with the same last name, according to the crash report.

The crash report showed Reyes as also having a Milltown address, but subsequent documentation from prosecutors lists an address on Schmidt Lane in North Brunswick.

One witness told investigators that Reyes was “traveling at a high rate of speed diagonally across the lanes of traffic,” while another said Reyes “cut her off” on Route 1 South.

The speeding Infiniti hit the concrete barrier along the northbound lanes, then “it became airborne at which time it impacted [the Ford F-150] which was traveling in the left lane on US Highway 1 North,” wrote NBPD Officer Henry Gliottone in his motor vehicle crash report.

“Based on the damage, it appears that first impact was to the driver side roof.”

Gliottone worked with MCPO Detective James Alleva on the investigation.

According to the crash report, investigators used a “PIX4D” photogrammetry system as well as a “Drone GPS system” to document and investigate the crash.

Route 1 is by far the deadliest transportation route in Middlesex County. As we reported, just hours into the new year, a state worker traversing Route 1 in Plainsboro became the first New Jerseyan to die in a crash this year.

Frick’s death on March 6 was the fourth fatal crash on the Middlesex County section of the highway, which runs from Maine to Florida.

At least three other fatal crashes occurred on chunks of Route 1 in other New Jersey counties, making it the roadway responsible for more than four percent of crashes in the entire state.

The crash comes as Middlesex County remains among the top counties for crash deaths. As of April 9, Middlesex County has seen seventeen deaths on its roadway network, while one of the county’s elected leaders has repeatedly deflected blame for the fatalities.

“That’s a state road,” responded Ronald Rios, who leads the elected Board of County Commissioners, when asked during a public meeting about the crash that killed Frick.

Rios had previously attempted to pass the buck to other entities, but in March alone four drivers died in crashes here in Middlesex County. Three were on state roads, but another occurred on a county road in Old Bridge, according to the NJ State Police.

Five days after that crash, Rios did not seem to be aware that it had occurred. Since then, a different county-owned road in Old Bridge was the scene of another fatal crash.

Prosecutors initially refused to name the young man who allegedly caused the March 6 crash in New Brunswick, providing a redacted version of the crash report that concealed the identities of both drivers, and the owners of the vehicles in question.

The MCPO finally released an unredacted version of the report on March 29, after repeated requests from New Brunswick Today.

Three days later, Reyes turned himself into the NBPD and was charged with second-degree Vehicular Homicide. Reyes is being represented by attorney Steven Altman, and his next court date hasn’t been scheduled as of yet, according to the MCPO.

Unlike most defendants at this stage of the court process, Reyes appeared before Judge Gary Price in person at the Middlesex County Courthouse in downtown New Brunswick. Others appear remotely from the county jail for Criminal Judicial Processing (CJP) Court.

Reyes, the 18-year-old driver, was released on “level two monitoring” after a brief hearing at the Middlesex County Courthouse on April 1. Prosecutors did not object to his being released, though they asked that he be restricted from driving while he awaits trial.

Judge Price rejected the algorithmic recommendation of level one monitoring, and agreed to a higher level of pretrial supervision: level two.

“I will depart from the recommendation,” said Price, noting that the prosecution and the defense had worked out the deal to release Reyes on level two monitoring pending his trial.

Reyes also agreed to surrender his passport and driver’s license in exchange for his freedom, and he’ll be required to check in twice per month with the court.

Anyone with information or video footage is asked to call Officer Gliottone at 732-745-5005 or Detective Alleva at 732-745-4011.

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Editor at New Brunswick Today | 732-993-9697 | editor@newbrunswicktoday.com | Website

Charlie is the founder and editor of New Brunswick Today, and the winner of the Awbrey Award for Community-Oriented Local Journalism. He is a proud Rutgers University journalism graduate, a community organizer, and a former independent candidate for mayor of New Brunswick.

Charlie is the founder and editor of New Brunswick Today, and the winner of the Awbrey Award for Community-Oriented Local Journalism. He is a proud Rutgers University journalism graduate, a community organizer, and a former independent candidate for mayor of New Brunswick.