Abraham T. Rendon, the driver of the Toyota that smashed through the fish market wall, causing a chain of destruction, was drunk, police said.
Updated 5 pm, Tuesday, April 8
The clean-up continued at The Net Result this week, following an early Saturday morning car accident that left the interior of the market littered with debris from smashed walls and display cases.
“We’ll try to open as soon as possible, but at this point, I have no idea when that will be,” owner Louis Larsen said. Mr. Larsen said he had considered reopening only a portion of the market where the take-out counter is located, but he must first be certain that a partial opening will not jeopardize his insurance claims.
Tisbury Police Lieutenant Eerik Meisner told The Times Monday morning that Abraham Torres Rendon, 25, of Edgartown, was at the wheel of a 2004 Toyota 4Runner heading from Oak Bluffs to Vineyard Haven when he drove the SUV into the exterior of the fish market about 1:40 am, Saturday morning.
Mr. Rendon and his female passenger, who was not charged with any crime, left the scene of the accident and fled to a nearby motel where police found them. Lieutenant Meisner said Mr. Rendon was charged with operating under the influence, marked lanes violations, speeding, reckless operation of a motor vehicle, leaving the scene of an accident with property damage, destruction of property, and resisting arrest.
Lieutenant Meisner said that Mr. Rendon offered the arresting officer $200 to let him go free. That netted him an additional charge of attempted bribery.
The couple did not sustain any injuries in the crash, police said.
Mr. Rendon refused to take a breathalyzer test at the State Police headquarters.
Mr. Rendon was released from the Dukes County Jail that same day, April 5, on $500 bail.
The Saturday morning accident caught The Net Result fully stocked for the busy weekend and Lent.
Inside the Net Result Saturday morning, owner Louie Larsen, employees and family members surveyed the extensive damage. Mr. Larsen said it appeared that the driver of the 4Runner barely hit the brakes before the vehicle hit the building. Once inside the building, it appeared the driver attempted to back out, he said.
Insulation, shattered glass, wood framing and vehicle parts littered the floor Saturday. The car struck a fiberglass lobster tank weighing thousands of pounds filled with lobsters for the weekend and pushed it into a stainless steel counter, bending the counter. The counter crushed the end of a 12-foot custom fish case and shattered the display glass. The impact sent the case into a wall freezer, breaking the glass door.
“None of this stuff is light,” Mr. Larsen said. He estimated the damage at more than $250,000.
The tank lost all its water. Early Saturday morning, employees moved the lobsters to a refrigerator
Unfortunately, Mr. Larsen said, the lobsters rescued from the damaged holding tank, which amounted to about 700 pounds, had to be thrown out. The tank was found to be full of broken glass from the windows and front display case, which made them unsafe for consumption.
Mr. Larsen said he was grateful for the quick response from police and firefighters. He said the store was fully stocked Friday in anticipation of the busy weekend. As Mr. Larsen made plans to begin the cleanup he said he was happy no one was hurt.
On Tuesday afternoon, a crew from Oceanside Fire and Water Damage Repairs worked in the shop, alongside Mr. Larsen.
Mr. Larsen said he has hired an insurance adjuster and is still trying to figure out what equipment is broken and what has to be completely replaced. He plans to turn the disaster into an opportunity to make some upgrades when he has to purchase new fixtures and equipment. “We’ll come back better,” he vowed.
“We might have to park a food truck outside,” Mr. Larsen said with a smile, adding that he hopes to have some kind of fish available for Good Friday.
Mr. Rendon is no stranger to motor vehicle charges.
On April 3, 2008, a charge of unlicensed operation of motor vehicle was dismissed upon payment of $100 court costs and completion of 16 hours of community service, according to The MV Times court report.
On June 12, 2013, Mr. Rendon was found guilty of unlicensed operation of motor vehicle. He was ordered to pay a $500 fine. A charge of operating under the influence (drugs) was dismissed at the request of the Commonwealth. He was found not responsible for a failure to signal.
He was found guilty on a second charge of negligent operation of motor vehicle and received one year’s probation. He was ordered to pay $100 in fees and complete 28 hours of community service.
On September 4, 2013, Mr. Rendon appeared in court on charges of operating a motor vehicle with a suspended license, unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, and no inspection sticker.
On November 4, 2013 a charge of operating a motor vehicle with a suspended license was dismissed at the request of the Commonwealth; he was found not responsible on a charge of speeding.
On November 7, 2013 a charge of operating a motor vehicle with a suspended license was continued without a finding for six months. A charge of unlicensed operation of motor vehicle was dismissed at the request of the Commonwealth. He was found not responsible on a charge of no inspection sticker.