Auto Glass Shop Assists in Hit-and-Run Investigation

A windshield-replacement job brought the unusual resolution to a hit-and-run investigation in New Hampshire last month.

Police in Dover, N.H., arrested Bruce Bernier, 61, of Newmarket, in connection with a hit-and-run incident April 2. According to police reports, a black sedan struck 37-year-old Shane McCall, of Dover, as he crossed the street in downtown Dover. McCall was hospitalized with multiple fractures.

Multiple surveillance videos captured the incident, showing a black car hitting McCall and then driving away. After piecing the surveillance videos together, police identified the car as a Toyota Corolla manufactured between 2005 and 2009. Dover Police Lt. Brant Dolleman told Foster’s Daily Democrat that the popularity of the car made the search for the suspect more difficult.

Police released images of the car and asked for the public’s help in identifying the driver, noting the car likely had damage to the front passenger-side corner. According to a probable-cause affidavit cited by Foster’s, detectives contacted numerous area auto-repair shops. An investigator’s call to a Safelite AutoGlass branch on April 18 turned up a record of a windshield replacement for a Toyota Corolla on April 11. Bernier was listed as the customer.

When reached Tuesday for additional information about the replacement job and investigation, a spokeswoman for Safelite declined to comment.

After detectives questioned Bernier at his home, he turned himself into police April 20. According to Foster’s, he confirmed the date of the windshield replacement and showed detectives the section of the windshield that had been broken and other damage that was consistent with what the surveillance videos show.

Bernier pleaded not guilty to the charge of felony conduct after an accident. He waived arraignment Thursday in Strafford County Superior Court and was released on personal recognizance.

Jacqui Barrineau is a contributing writer for glassBYTEs.com.

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