Hayride driver pleads no contest to reduced charge

Times-Herald Newspapers

DEARBORN — The 28-year-old Highland Township man accused of reckless driving for his role in a hayride accident at Camp Dearborn last year that sent nine people to area hospitals pleaded no-contest to the reduced charge of impaired driving.

Adam Forehand changed his plea before his bench trial began before 52nd District Court Judge Robert Bondy Feb. 6.

Forehand had originally entered a plea of not guilty to the charge of reckless driving, which carries a maximum penalty of 93 days in jail or a $500 fine.

The impaired driving charge calls for a driver’s license restriction for 90 days.

Forehand will be sentenced by Bondy at 9 a.m. March 19.

Forehand, a part-time employee at Camp Dearborn, was driving a tractor towing passengers around the camp for a hayride Oct. 27 when the accident occurred.

According to published reports, the incident occurred shortly after 5:30 p.m. in Area B of the camp when Forehand attempted to navigate a small hill. The tractor was turning to the left, toward a row of campsites, when the trailer turned over, landed on its side and righted itself again.

All 16 passengers, who were associated with the Henry Ford Community College Support Staff Association, were thrown from the trailer and several riders sustained injuries.

According to the police report, Forehand informed the police that he had been drinking before the accident and was given a breath test by the officers, registering a blood alcohol content of 0.06 percent. The legal limit for driving is 0.08 percent in Michigan.

Forehand said he had consumed alcohol because it was his birthday.

Camp Dearborn, in Milford, is owned by the city of Dearborn.

(Bob Oliver can be reached at boliver@bewickpublications.com.)