— New Jersey State Police have identified the inmate killed in a state prison van crash Thursday as Jerry Siracusa, 44, from Elizabeth.
Bayside State Prison inmate Jerry Siracusa, 44, from Elizabeth was killed in a crash Thursday. (New Jersey Department of Corrections)
Siracusa was killed and five other people were injured when the Department of Corrections van in which he was a passenger crashed into the rear end of a flatbed tow truck on Route 55.
The cause of the accident which took place in the southbound lanes of Route 55 at Milepost 24.9 at 1:43 p.m. remains under investigation, according to Sgt. Jeff Flynn, state police spokesman.
The others injured were identified as Senior Correction Officer Michael Rodriguez, 45, the van driver and Senior Correction Officer Gregory DuBois, 43, who was in the passenger seat. The other inmate hurt was Raul Salazar, 30, of Ewing.
The driver of the flatbed truck was identified as Bruce Hall, 27, of Bridgeton and his passenger was King Williams, 67, of Millville.
According to Flynn, the preliminary investigation shows that the Department of Corrections van with the four men aboard struck the rear of the flatbed tow truck in the right hand travel lane of Route 55.
The impact pushed the flatbed truck, which was transporting a vehicle, across the let southbound lane and off the left side of the roadway, Flynn said.
The corrections officers and the transport van were all based at Bayside State Prison in Leesburg in Maurice River Township, according to Matthew Schuman, spokesman for the Department of Corrections.
It was not immediately known where the prisoners were being transported from.
Siracusa, who was being held at Bayside, had a long state prison record dating back to 1993, officials said. He was incarcerated for drug offenses, theft and and parole violations through the years. He was serving his latest sentence for drug offenses and resisting arrest, authorities said.
After Thursday's crash, Siracusa was taken to Inspira Medical Center Vineland where he was pronounced dead, authorities said.
Rodriguez, DuBois and Salazar were all airlifted to AlantiCare Regional Medical Center in Atlantic City.
Hall and Williams were taken to Inspira Medical Center Vineland.
Conditions of the injured were not available Friday.
Bill Gallo Jr. may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow South Jersey Times on Twitter @TheSJTimes. Find NJ.com on Facebook.
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