Two drivers involved in the fatal car crash that claimed the life of 20-year-old Alexander Martinez of Meriden were both intoxicated, according to Middletown Police. Their arrest warrants provide sobering details about what happened early in the morning of July 24.
The warrants state that 36-year-old Stephen M. Tyrseck of Durham had been drinking to excess at a Middletown bar and Jedidiah Roesler, 22, of Meriden had consumed beers and whiskey at a friend’s house before colliding at South Main Street and Highland Avenue in Middletown at 2:25 a.m.
Both were charged with manslaughter and DUI, among other charges, in the collision that also injured three passengers in Roesler’s 2002 Honda Civic.
“Mr. Roesler’s blood alcohol content of .182 and Mr. Tyrseck’s blood alcohol content of .269 caused the death of Mr. Alexander Martinez,” the warrant states.
Roesler turned himself in Monday at 8 p.m. at Middletown Police headquarters. He’s facing second-degree manslaughter, misconduct with a motor vehicle, negligent homicide, reckless driving, operation under the influence of alcohol, failure to grant right of way and traveling at an unreasonable speed.
Tyrseck was arrested by Middletown Police after he turned himself in late last week. He was charged with second-degree manslaughter with a motor vehicle, misconduct with a motor vehicle, negligent homicide with a motor vehicle, reckless driving, driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol and speeding.
Tyrseck, a Middletown South Fire District firefighter, was recognized at the accident early in the morning of July 24 by responding officer Brian Hubbs, Tyrseck’s friend.
The warrant says Tyrseck was seated on a curb and had trouble remaining seated upright and his speech was slurred. Tyrseck and Roesler, the warrant states, appeared highly intoxicated and smelled of alcohol at the crash scene.
In the report, Hubbs said he asked Tyrseck if he was OK and realized when Tyrseck looked at him that he was so intoxicated Tyrseck did not recognize him.
According to the report, Tyrseck claimed to have drank “five or six Bud Light beers” several hours before and had red, watery eyes and was swaying back and forth.
Roesler told police he was celebrating a friend’s entrance into the Navy at a party in which he drank “four or five beers and one shot of whiskey” and left at 1:30 a.m. Roesler drove the Civic with three passengers, including Martinez. After he hit the 2008 Ford F350 pickup truck, “I just made sure that I was OK and everyone else was OK, but Alex wasn’t in the car,” Roesler said, according to the warrant.
Martinez was later found 38 feet from the collision.
Tyrseck said he was driving his pickup home from Cromwell and couldn’t remember anything past midnight that evening.
A witness said he saw the Ford cross the double yellow line twice on South Main Street. Another witness, according to the warrant, said he never saw the pickup’s brake lights go on. Another witness told police Tyrseck was “intoxicated beyond belief,” and seemed “delusional and out of it.”
A bartender at Middletown’s Hair of the Dog Saloon told police Tyrseck came into the bar between 10 and 11 p.m. and left between 1 and 1:30 a.m. He told police, according to the warrant, that Tyrseck was not “outwardly intoxicated.”
However, when police obtained video footage from the bar, it showed, according to the warrant, Tyrseck drank six 12-ounce beers and was “swaying, holding onto furniture and stumble … He was very demonstrative and flailing his arms when he spoke to other patrons.”
Tyrseck left the bar at 2:09 a.m. and a witness said she saw him try the door of La Boca Restaurant at 2:15 a.m., found it was locked, then “fall into the building by the entrance to the Hair of the Dog saloon.”
She called police when she saw him get into the pickup because he appeared drunk and should not be driving, the warrant states.
Police determined the Ford was traveling 73 miles per hour just before the crash and the Civic was going at least 40 miles per hour — in a 35-40 mph zone.
Police said there were no pre- or post-collision skidmarks on the roadway.
Both men will be arraigned in Middletown Superior Court Dec. 28.