SHARON — A man with a lengthy history of speeding violations and car crashes was charged Monday with motor vehicle homicide after allegedly driving a sport utility vehicle that struck and killed a woman a day earlier.
Jeffrey Bickoff was also charged with driving with a suspended license, speeding, and a marked lane violation, Sharon police said Monday. The 44-year-old Sharon man had been at fault in 10 car crashes and had 10 speeding tickets on his record before the accident Sunday, said Michael Verseckes, state Department of Transportation spokesman.
The victim, 20-year-old Haley Cremer of Sharon, was a Simmons College student, had just moved into an apartment in town, and was happy to be starting a summer job at Lululemon, her uncle said. Authorities said she had been jogging and had stopped on the side of the road to talk to someone when she was hit by the SUV.
“This is a young woman who was undoubtedly going to make a remarkable wife, a remarkable mother, and to have that taken away in such a senseless, stupid loss, it shakes the boundaries of my faith,” said her uncle, Steve Litner. “I cannot make sense of it.”
Police said Cremer was hit by a white Ford Explorer about 4:30 p.m. near the intersection of Hampton and Dogwood roads. She was taken to Norwood Hospital, where she was pronounced dead, State Police said. Bickoff will be summoned to court later.
A man who answered the door Monday at an address listed in Sharon police reports as Bickoff’s said he could not comment.
The day before the accident, Cremer had been cheering on her cousin at a lacrosse game, Litner said. He described Cremer as a selfless person who tended to family members in times of need. After her mother was diagnosed with breast cancer, Cremer often returned home from her Simmons dorm to help out around the house, Litner remembered.
“Haley was such a huge part of her [mother’s] recovery,” Litner said. “You never once ever heard her complain about anything.”
Cremer, a varsity soccer player in high school, had completed her sophomore year at Simmons. She achieved dean’s list honors multiple times, earning the required 3.5 grade point average as a physical therapy major.
“She was a very strong student, beloved by her faculty and peers, and a Simmons Hall community member, where she cultivated many strong friendships,” a statement from the school said.
“She had a passion for fitness, which was most recently reflected in a service learning project where she developed a successful 5K run in April. She had a warm and positive spirit.”
In 2011, she was one of 10 Norfolk County students chosen to receive a peer leadership award from Norfolk District Attorney Michael W. Morrissey, according to a report in the Sharon Advocate. She was chosen in part for her role in DUO (Do Unto Others), a program that had her visit elementary and middle schools to promote a culture of respect and tolerance among students.
Those living near the crash site said the Cremer family is well known in the area. On Hampton Road, a tree-lined residential thoroughfare, tire tracks were visible Monday in grass next to the sidewalk.
After the crash, residents could see Cremer’s white running shoes and pink cellphone lying on the road. Chalk circles marked where the sneakers lay when Robin Director arrived home from her son’s soccer practice Sunday.
“I’ll never forget the sight of that,” said Director, who lives on Dogwood Road. “They need to put in speed bumps here. It’s dangerous for the kids.”
Roberta Fishman, who lives around the corner from where the crash occurred, said drivers often speed around the curve where Cremer was hit. Fishman and a friend went on a morning run Monday, but instead of running on the road as usual, they used the sidewalk. They craned their necks every time a car approached.
“They fly by,” she said.
The crash is under investigation by State Police, Sharon police, and the Norfolk district attorney’s office.
The state Department of Transportation said Monday that Bickoff’s license had been suspended in April and again in June. The June suspension came after his third moving violation within two years.
Since the Sunday accident, his license and right to operate have been revoked under the “immediate threat” provision of state law because of his alleged involvement in a fatal crash. The revocation is for an indefinite period of time, Verseckes said.