Two injured in alleged DUI wreck in Bristol

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Two men were transported to Rhode Island Hospital early Monday morning, following a head-on collision with a telephone pole.

Police responded to an area of Broadcommon Road just before 1:30 a.m. Feb. 17, for a report of a car accident with injuries. Upon arrival, Officer Barry Carinha noted a silver Volvo with disabling front-end damage near Peckham Drive. There was a telephone pole about 15 feet from the car, "sheared in two places, creating a direct hazard to all parties involved," Officer Carinha stated in his report.

The driver, Benjamin D. Minior, 21, of 17 Casey Drive, Bristol, was sitting the driver's seat. He appeared to be "disoriented and was drooling from the side of his mouth," Officer Carinha reported. Both airbags deployed.

When asked if he was hurt, Mr. Minior allegedly told police that his "ankle hurt from hockey," but was otherwise "fine."

Mr. Minior's passenger, a 25-year-old Warren man, was transported to the hospital for treatment of his injuries — apparent broken bones and possible internal injuries, the report states. He was found laying outside of the car, holding his legs.

Mr. Minior was asked several times if he was involved in the crash, to which he allegedly replied, "I don't know. I was walking down the street and saw my buddy was in a crash so I went to the car."

At that point, Officer Carinha reported that Mr. Minior looked back at the car and said, "Is that my car? Why is my car smashed up? I wasn't driving."

While being interviewed, Officer Carinha reported Mr. Minior smelled like alcohol as he talked. He allegedly denied participating in a field sobriety test, and was transported to the hospital for treatment of a large cut on his head.

Police searched Mr. Minior's car and allegedly found a large amount of marijuana and multiple pieces of paraphernalia that would suggest his intent was to distribute it.

He was arrested on two felony charges of DUI resulting in serious bodily injury, and possession of marijuana with intent to deliver.

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A lifelong Portsmouth resident, Jim graduated from Portsmouth High School in 1982 and earned a journalism degree from the University of Rhode Island in 1986. He's worked two different stints at East Bay Newspapers, for a total of 18 years with the company so far. When not running all over town bringing you the news from Portsmouth, Jim listens to lots and lots and lots of music, watches obscure silent films from the '20s and usually has three books going at once. He also loves to cook crazy New Orleans dishes for his wife of 25 years, Michelle, and their two sons, Jake and Max.