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Mass. woman charged in fatal motorcycle crash in Salem, N.H.

A Massachusetts woman who was allegedly using her cell phone while driving is facing charges for an August crash in Salem, N.H. that killed a motorcyclist from Methuen, according to police

Sara Grams, 30, of Haverhill, is charged with negligent homicide, negligent driving, “hands free” violation, and a yellow line violation, police in Salem, N.H., said in a statement his week on its Facebook page.

On Aug. 22, Grams was driving a 2018 Jeep eastbound on Main Street, which is also Route 97, when she allegedly crossed the double yellow line into the westbound lane and struck a 2012 Toyota at about 6:20 p.m. , police said.

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The crash forced the Toyota off the roadway, but the Jeep went sideways in the westbound lane and struck a 2000 Harley Davidson driven by Austin Willette, 24 of Methuen, police said.

Willette, who had been driving in the westbound lane, was later taken by MedFlight to a hospital in Boston, where he died the next day, according to the statement.

The driver of the Toyota was identified as Lawrence Goddard, 65 of Salem, N.H.

The Salem Police Department’s crash analysis unit conducted a lengthy investigation that examined physical evidence, vehicle speeds and driver’s actions before the crash, among other factors, the statement said.


Investigators determined that Grams was allegedly distracted by her phone at the time of the crash. They applied for an arrest warrant and she was arrested on Jan. 22, police said.

Grams was released on personal recognizance. An arraignment will be held at Salem District Court, according to the statement.


Anyone with information about the crash should contact Detective James Carlin at 603-893-1911, police said.


Adam Sennott can be reached at adam.sennott@globe.com.