A 21-year-old Brockton man has been cited by police for failure to stop for a red light after his minivan allegedly crashed this morning in Boston into a sedan driven by New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady.
Police said Ludgero Rodrigues was cited based on witness statements, despite his claim that he had the green light as he drove into the intersection where his vehicle collided with Brady's.
One man riding in the back of the Mercury Villager minivan was hospitalized after the crash in Boston's Back Bay section, which was reported at about 6:34 a.m. today. Brady, who was driving an Audi sedan, appeared shaken after the accident, witnesses said, but he participated in a walk-through and practice later in the day as the team prepared for its season opener Sunday against the Cincinnati Bengals.
The Patriots said in an official tweet and on their Facebook page today that Brady "reports that he's OK."
Police said in a statement that the driver of an Audi S8 said he was driving on Gloucester Street through the intersection towards Commonwealth when the minivan "crossed into his path" from Commonealth. The driver, who was not named in the statement but has been identified by law enforcement officials as Brady, said that he, rather than Rodrigues, had the green light.
Brady told police that "he attempted to swerve, but was unable to," and his vehicle struck the passenger side of the minivan.
Brady was able to get out and walk around after the crash. The minivan's roof had to be cut open so the man in the back could be placed on a backboard and removed through the back window, said Boston Fire Department spokesman Steve MacDonald. The victim was then transported to Brigham and Women's Hospital in serious condition, according to police. A nearby traffic light was also knocked down in the incident.
Rodrigues had a lengthy driving record, including a charge of drunken driving after a November 2009 crash in New Bedford. Due to repeated infractions, he had already taken a driver safety class in 2008. His other violations included failure to use seat belts, failure to use child safety seats, driving an uninspected vehicle, driving without a license, and failure to signal, according to data provided by Registry of Motor Vehicles.
Neighborhood resident Bill Barron said he heard a sound like thunder and looked out his window to see the accident.
"I thought it was a college student who had taken his dad's car and got into an accident," he said.
He said Brady seemed a little shaken and was dusting glass off himself.
He said the man extricated from the van appeared to be conscious by the time he was taken into the ambulance.
Hanna LeStrange, who was staying at a friend's house across the green, said she heard the boom, and went over to the scene.
"It was just really high-impact, you could tell. The front of the Audi was off," she said.
"He was sort of bent over, looked completely shaken up. He got up and just started wiping his jeans," she said of Brady.
Another witness who came across the aftermath of the crash said Brady emerged from his Audi sedan and "looked a little shook up, shaking his hands." Brady went into an ambulance and a few minutes later was picked up by someone in a Jeep Cherokee and drove off.
While media flocked to the stadium to learn more about Brady's health, the star quarterback did not make an appearance in the locker room while it was open to the media.
That did not stop photographers from lining up in front of Brady's empty locker to get the best shots. And dozens of media members crowded the locker room to get other players' reactions.
Brady's teammates said he appeared to be fine.
"I saw him, I asked him if he was OK, he said, 'I'm fine," said linebacker Tully Banta-Cain.
"I want to thank the safety personnel for their service, and express our concern and support for the well-being of the occupants of the other vehicle," Brady's agent, Don Yee, said in a statement.
Brady lives in the Back Bay with his supermodel wife Gisele Bundchen. "On behalf of Gisele we thank you for your kind words and support to Tom Brady," Bundchen posted on her Twitter site today.
Monique Walker, Mike Bello, Albert Breer, and Suzanne Kreiter of the Globe staff contributed to this report.
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