Driver charged in deadly Apple store crash says his foot got caught on accelerator

The Massachusetts motorist accused of plowing into an Apple store at a “consistent high rate of speed” told police his foot got caught on the accelerator and he couldn’t brake in time to avoid the deadly crash, officials said Tuesday.

Bradley Rein, 53, made his first appearance in Hingham District Court, where Judge Heather Bradley ordered the defendant held in lieu of $100,000 bond and told him not to drive if he posts bail.

He’s been charged with felony reckless homicide by motor vehicle and misdemeanor operation of a car, stemming from Monday morning’s crash in Hingham, which is about 16 miles southeast of downtown Boston.

Police respond to the scene of a crash inside an Apple Store in Hingham, Mass., on Nov. 21, 2022.
Police respond to the scene of a crash inside an Apple Store in Hingham, Mass., on Nov. 21, 2022.Steven Senne / AP

Kevin Bradley, a 65-year-old Wayne, New Jersey resident, was killed and at least 20 people were injured, officials said.

“While driving in the area of Barnes & Noble, Mr. Rein states his right foot became stuck on the accelerator and his vehicle accelerated,” according to a court document.

“Mr. Rein stated he used his left foot to try to brake but was unable to stop the vehicle and the vehicle crashed through the front of the Apple Store. Mr Rein stated everything happened fast.”

Rein told investigators he had no medical issues that would’ve impaired his driving, and his breathalyzer test showed no trace of alcohol, the court document said.

His 2019 Toyota 4Runner crashed through the store’s glass front, went through the sales floor before finally coming to rest against the back wall, Plymouth County Assistant District Attorney David Cutshall told the court.

“Investigators interviewed witnesses and viewed surveillance video which appeared to show the dark colored SUV traveling at a consistent high rate of speed down the travel lane and directly into the Apple store,” Cutshall said.

He had no connection to anyone in the store, according to defense attorney Alison King, who had asked for bail to be set at $20,000. The defendant’s lawyer didn’t challenge any of facts of the case as stated by prosecutors in court.

The unemployed software salesman has lived in Massachusetts for 30 years and has long ties to the community, according to King, who repeatedly called Monday’s tragedy “an unfortunate accident.”

“As he explained, his foot got stuck on the accelerator — as he explained to me, it was kind of between the accelerator pedal and the side and his foot got stuck,” King said. “He tried to move his foot to get it unstuck. He also tried to brake with his other foot while he was doing that, but he was unable to. It’s just really unfortunate.”

Rein has a clean criminal record, though he was charged with alleged driving under the influence in Vermont in December, 2020. But that case was later expunged, lawyers on both sides said.

The defendant’s next court date is set for Dec. 22.

He faces up to five years behind bars if convicted on the top count, a Plymouth County District Attorney’s spokeswoman said, and up to two years on the misdemeanor.

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