3 Cars Plunge Into Icy South Jersey Waters — and 3 People Die — Over Weekend
TRENTON — Three people including a married couple died when their vehicles went off the road and into a body of water in three separate incidents.
Burlington County Prosecutor Scott Coffina said that a couple in a minivan was rear ended by a speeding car late Saturday afternoon in at the Bridgeboro Road jughandle on Route 130 in Willingboro. The impact of the hit sent the minican down an embankment and into Olympia Lake.
Robert Stephens, 52, and his wife Janet, 50, of Burlington Township were taken to Lourdes Medical Center of Burlington County in Willingboro, where they both died.
Coffina said no charges were filed against the driver of the car, Amish Patel, 29, of Delanco, pending further investigation and the results of a toxicology tests conducted on blood drawn from Patel following the collision. Patel could potentially be charged with traffic summonses in municipal court.
Robert Stephens was a decon at Greater New Life Ministries of Collinsgwood, according to a Facebook post by Pastor Karen Rogers shared on the church's Facebook page.
"It was while he was a member at GNLM that he was ordained an elder in the Lord's church. GNLM rejoiced with Rob and Janet as they were united in holy matrimony. And now we mourn and weep with their family and loved ones at their sudden deaths," Rogers wrote.
A woman died on Sunday afternoon in Burlington City after the the car she was a passenger in struck a parked minivan on Riverbank Road, went over the riverwall and into the water, according to Coffina.
The front end of the car broke through the ice and became submerged, according to Coffina. The woman was extricated and taken to Lourdes Medical Center of Burlington County in Willingboro where she was pronounced dead.
Coffina said the driver of the car, a man, fled the car. but was later found by police officers from Beverly City and Edgewater Park Township.
The proesecutor has not disclosed the identities of the Burlington City residents. No charges have yet been filed.
A car landed in the Elizabeth River inside Conant Park in Hillside early Sunday morning, according to Hillside fire fighters. According to a Facebook post by Local #35 several people were removed from the car and were treated for minor injuries.