(Matt Collette for The Boston Globe)
Workers prepared to replace a damaged telephone pole at the crash scene.
By Matt Collette and Marc Larocque, Globe Correspondents
SAUGUS – A Saugus High School senior on his way home from prom night was allegedly driving drunk when he smashed his car into two women who were out for a walk early this morning, killing one and critically injuring the other, police said this afternoon.
Jonathan Caruso, 18, who was driving home from a school-sponsored, post-prom harbor cruise, faces a variety of charges in the accident that killed Carol Marean, 67, and injured her daughter, Charlotte Marean, 41, said Police Lieutenant Michael Annese.
The two women were out walking their dog when they were hit at about 7:30 a.m. at Essex and Grove streets, police said.
Police and school officials had organized several events over the past month to discourage students from drinking and driving, including a mock drunken driving accident, Annese said.
“We did everything possible, but there are things outside our authority,” he said.
The senior prom was held Friday night at Danversport Yacht Club in the nearby town of Danvers. Students were then bused into Boston for an overnight harbor cruise, a school tradition that has been held after each prom for nearly 10 years.
Annese said the students were given Breathalyzer tests and their bags were checked before the start of each event.
Two other students who were in Caruso’s car were interviewed by police but were not arrested, Annese said. Caruso was charged with negligent motor vehicle homicide, operating a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol, and transporting alcohol as a minor. He is being held pending his arraignment Monday morning.
“This is the time of the year we dread because at the end of the school year bad decisions are made,” Annese said.
Debbie Belmonte, who lives across the street from the accident scene, said she and her sister were in the living room when they heard the crash.
“First, we heard a loud bang," she said. “We were in the living room and we heard – she thought it was thunder and I thought it was a motorcycle.”
They ran across the street to help. Her sister called 911.
Belmonte said she saw three teenagers in the car, two boys and a girl with her hair in a bun. "The kids, they started to flee, and I said: ‘No, no, no. I know what you look like,’ " said Belmonte's sister, Donna, who declined to give her last name.
Debbie Belmonte said the Mariens walked their dog through the neighborhood every day. "They are two innocent women who walk their dog every day. I don’t know them, but I see them."
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