Charges follow fatal Ferrari crash

2:19 PM, May 16, 2012   |    comments
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EAST RUTHERFORD, New Jersey (WNBC) - Two men have been charged in the death of a motorcyclist struck by one of the Ferraris they were driving on a private race course in New Jersey Sunday.

Joseph Ferretti, 28, of Dumont, New Jersey, and Joseph Meyer, 19, of Florida, were arrested Monday night and charged with death by auto in the crash that killed 56-year-old Stephen Lenge near MetLife Stadium, police said.

Lenge was a stagehand heading to work at the stadium when he was struck by Ferretti and Meyer, according to police.

The two were allegedly driving Ferraris to an event run by Gotham Dream Cars, where customers pay to drive luxury autos around a temporary track with a driving instructor.

Investigators believe the two men were going above the 25-per-hour speed limit when Meyer hit a curb and lost control.

It appears Ferretti swerved to avoid his colleague, but the move took his car into path of Lenge, who was on his motorcycle.

"It was just seconds," said Joe Vilanni, Lenge's friend and co-worker of more than 30 years. "Either way, if he was a second late, a second quicker, it wouldn't have happened."

At 19, Meyer -- who police say originally lost control -- wouldn't qualify to rent one of the company's cars.

According to Gotham Dream Cars' website drivers must be 21 or older.

Ferretti is reportedly the brother of the company's owner, who told reporters his business has a good safety record and that the crash happened outside of any organized event.

Attorney information for Ferretti and Meyer were not immediately available.

Lenge, a married father of two from Kinnelon, New Jersey was not even originally on the schedule to work Sunday, according to Vilanni.

"We said we'd handle it. He said he'd come in," said Joe Vilanni, another friend. "Wouldn't leave us. We tried to talk him out of it."

"God took a good one," Jimmy Vilanni said as he choked up. "Sometimes God gets impatient."


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