The Police Log is a digest of reports provided by the Johnston Police, Rhode Island State Police and other departments.
DUTY TO STOP
On March 19, Patrolman Merrick A. Cook responded to a report of a hit-and-run incident involving a RIPTA bus and another vehicle in the area of 1075 Hartford Ave.
Cook spoke with the bus driver, who said that the bus was at a stop westbound on Hartford Avenue. As the bus resumed moving, the driver noticed a white Honda Accord attempting to pass on his left. Cook said the white vehicle went into the center turn lane of oncoming traffic to pass the bus.
As the white vehicle passed the bus, its left rear bumper collided with the left side of the bus. The vehicle continued west down Hartford Avenue without stopping, Cook said. He also noted no injuries were reported, and there were only three passengers on the bus at the time.
Procedural checks showed the white vehicle registered to an address in Warwick, to which Lt. Michael J. Babbitt responded the next day.
Babbitt found the vehicle’s primary operator – identified as Matthew Breton, 28, of 21 Davis Circle, Warwick – and inquired about the damage to the vehicle. Babbitt said Breton told him he only noticed it when someone else pointed it out to him. He later said he recalled driving past the bus, but was unaware he collided with it. Babbitt said that, based on the vehicle’s damage, “it is unlikely that [the operator] knew that he did not strike the bus.”
Breton was issued a summons to appear in Third Division District Court on a charge of duty to stop, accident resulting in damage to attended vehicles. Breton has a court date set for April 1.