Jan. 3, 2012
BOSTON — Data that were supposed to provide answers about Lt. Gov. Tim Murray's Nov. 2 car crash are raising new questions.
On Jan. 3, the state police announced that Murray was driving 108 miles per hour and was not wearing his seat belt at the time of the crash. He apparently was asleep at the wheel when his car hit a ledge and flipped over twice.
“I take full responsibility for the accident and I’m grateful that I’m ok and that no one was injured. I recognize that I should have been more careful,” Murray said at a Jan. 3 press conference.
Murray originally said he had been wearing a seat belt and that he was driving around the speed limit. But he acknowledged the black box data tells a different story.
“This accident happened within seconds. And I’ve never been in an accident like that. I stood before many of you that morning a few hours after a very traumatic accident and answered your questions as best I could,” he said.
The accident occurred at 5:30 a.m., about 30 miles from Murray's house. When it happened, he said he was out looking at storm damage, even though it was pitch black at the time. He is sticking with that explanation.
Murray had hoped the story would be put to bed. But on "Greater Boston," Boston Herald reporter Dave Wedge and WGBH News' Adam Reilly were... skeptical, to say the least.
"Clearly the whole story hasn't been told," Wedge said. "There are holes in his story." He noted that Murray said he had gone out to get a coffee and a copy of the Herald but neither was found in the car after the crash.
Reilly and Wedge also pointed to the lack of immediate follow-up by the police. The state police have now issued Murray a $555 ticket for speeding and not wearing a seat belt, and are charging him for the destroyed car. At the time of the accident, however, the police issued no citations and did not pursue payment for the car.
To Wedge, that "really smells of a cover-up."
The police also refused to release black box data until Murray — who was under increasing pressure from the Secretary of State and the media — gave permission.
"He needs to come fully clean," said Reilly.
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