Andrew K. RuOTOLO, JR. Justice CENTER
32 Rahway Avenue, elizabeth, NJ 07202


Lyndsay V. Ruotolo
Acting Prosecutor

Press Release

For Immediate Release: February 27, 2012

The Union County Prosecutor’s Office and Westfield Police Department continue to investigate a fatal accident that occurred last month and left one woman dead and another man seriously injured, said Union County Prosecutor Theodore J. Romankow.

According to police, around 6:05 p.m. On January 26, a car driven by Patricia Currie, 68, of Scotch Plains was passing through the intersection of North Avenue at Tuttle Parkway when it appears she grazed a pedestrian as he crossed the street, said Romankow. Currie immediately stopped and offered assistance to the man, attempting leading him across the street. Witnesses reported that as the two walked across the road, a Chevy Cavalier, driven by Charles Casiere, (DOB: 9/9/27), of Westfield , struck the pair causing injuries and propelling them several yards down North Avenue. Casiere, who stopped at the scene, was charged with Driving While Intoxicated, Failure to Yield to a Pedestrian in a Crosswalk, and Reckless Driving.

Almost immediately after, a second vehicle driven by John Diaz, (DOB: 3/12/38),  of Westfield, struck Currie, who was now in the roadway, said Romankow. That vehicle, a GMC pickup, struck Currie causing further injury. Diaz was charged with Driving While Intoxicated, Failure to Yield to a Pedestrian in a Crosswalk, Failure to Report an Accident and Reckless Driving.

Currie was taken to a local hospital and pronounced dead a short time later. The male pedestrian was transported to University Hospital in Newark for treatment.

At this point the case remains an active investigation and additional charges may be filed.


These criminal charges are mere accusations.
The defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.