Police: Driver in fatal crash tried to run from scene

Mike Martindale and Holly Fournier
The Detroit News

Novi — A man formally charged Thursday in 52nd District Court in an alcohol-related crash had a blood-alcohol level three times that at which a driver is considered drunk, according to preliminary tests.

Goran Djordjevski

Goran Djordjevski, 41, of Farmington Hills was charged with operating while intoxicated causing death and leaving the scene of an accident resulting in death. Both are 15-year felonies.

Witnesses told police he rear-ended an SUV Monday night on West Pontiac Trail near Addington after driving through the area erratically. The SUV overturned, trapping the driver. She died of thermal burns and smoke inhalation, the Oakland County Medical Examiner said.

Djordjevski was arraigned by video from the Oakland County Jail, where he has been held since the night of the crash.

Djordjevski's attorney, Christopher Jarboa, entered a not guilty plea on his client's behalf.

District Magistrate Andra Richardson set a $100,000 cash bond with bond conditions including an alcohol tether, random drug and alcohol testing, and not to use alcohol or to leave the state.

Richardson denied a 10 percent bond after assistant prosecutor Jason Pernick said he was concerned Djordjevski — a married father of two children — was a flight risk. While Djordjevski has lived in the area for 20 years and has no criminal history, after his vehicle became disabled following the crash he tried to flee the scene on foot and had to be held there by a witness until police arrived, according to Oakland County sheriff's deputy Michael David.

Just before the crash, a witness reported a vehicle driving through the area "swerving all over the roadway and almost hitting other vehicles." The witness was unable to get his cellphone to work immediately but followed the vehicle, a 2014 Chevrolet Traverse, in his own vehicle.

But before the witness was able to report a location and other information, the Traverse rear-ended a GMC SUV as the driver tried to make a left turn from West Pontiac Trail.

Djordjevski admitted being involved in the crash and having consumed alcohol before the accident. David said the man scored a 0.249 blood alcohol level at the scene on a preliminary breath test — more than three times the 0.08 level at which a motorist is considered to be intoxicated. Toxicology results that are used in drunk driving cases are still pending, investigators said.

The victim has been tentatively identified as a 44-year-old Milford Township woman. The sheriff's office said it may take several months before DNA tests allow the medical examiner to make a positive identification.

The woman, believed to be a pizza delivery person for Pizza Hut, was about to deliver an order at the time of the crash. It is unknown if she was wearing a seat belt, police said. The suspect was wearing a seat belt.

The suspect was taken to Providence Park Hospital where he was examined for minor injuries.

Outside the courtroom, Jarboa said he could not say too much about his client or the case because he was still getting information.

"We do wish to give our heartfelt condolences to the family of the person who passed away," Jarboa said.


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