Police: Driver in Saturday Pittsfield collision was drunk, texting


PITTSFIELD -- A man involved in a head-on collision Saturday that severely injured a 73-year-old woman was driving drunk and texting at the time of the accident, authorities said.

Jonathan J. Delaney, 30, of South Washington State Road, was driving his pick-up on East Street in Dalton about 11:30 p.m. Saturday when he plowed into an SUV. Both vehicles sustained heavy front-end damage.

"He came right at me," the other driver told police.

The woman, Joan Parrott, of Windsor, suffered severe facial injuries and was transported to Berkshire Medical Center, where she remains in intensive care, the Berkshire District Attorney's Office said. Delaney was not injured.

Before police arrived, Delaney allegedly pushed an emergency medical technician who was trying to help him, then took a 32-pack of beer from inside the truck and threw it into the vehicle's bed. Two unopened beers were found inside the vehicle, prosecutors said.

The EMT later told police Delaney began revving his engine and she believed he was trying to leave the scene. Three bystanders got Delaney to stop hitting his accelerator, according to the report.

When police arrived, Delaney was unsteady on his feet, smelled of alcohol, had glassy eyes, failed field sobriety tests and admitted drinking five beers, police said.

He refused to take a breathalyzer, according to court documents. He was overheard at the police station telling his father he was texting on the phone at the time of the accident, police said.

Delaney pleaded not guilty in Central Berkshire District Court on Monday to single counts of felony drunken driving causing serious bodily injury, texting while driving and a marked lanes violation. His attorney, Thomas C. Doyle, said his client was a longtime resident of the area who worked for his father's company.

Delaney was held without bail on a parole warrant in connection with several larceny cases. He was given a two year and four month sentence in August 2012 and was later released on parole with four months left to serve, according to court records. The parole board could order him to serve the rest of his sentence.

Judge Paul M. Vrabel also ordered $3,500 or $35,000 bail in the drunken driving case. Doyle had asked for $750 bail. Assistant Berkshire District Attorney Michael D'angelo was asking that bail be set at $10,000 cash, due to the serious nature of the charges.

Delaney is due back in court on Dec. 20.


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