Family of man killed in Warwick crash releases statement, saying they are 'devastated'
The family of a 23-year-old man who was killed in a Warwick pedestrian crash is speaking out a day after his death.
“We thank all our family and friends and the community for the outpouring of support we received as we deal with the tragic loss of our beloved David Bustin,” David Manning, who described himself as a representative to the family, as well as Bustin's uncle and godfather, said in a statement to the media Thursday night.
Bustin died of his injuries at Rhode Island Hospital after he was hit near 651 Main Ave. just before 10:30 p.m. on Tuesday.
The driver, Marshall Howard, 24, of Warwick, was charged with driving under the influence, death resulting, and operating a motor vehicle with a suspended license. He did not enter a plea to the DUI charge at his arraignment in Kent County Court.
“Naturally David's mother Karen and 3 sisters and entire Catholic family including grandfather, uncles and aunts, and many cousins are completely devastated by this horrific crime that has taken him away just shy of his 24th birthday,” Manning said. “The loss of this young man is especially crushing as David had just graduated from New England Institute of Technology's first class in Welding Engineering and had already commenced a career at General Dynamics Electric Boat.”
Manning went on to note that Karen appreciates the public’s respect in giving her privacy while grieving and putting her son to rest.
“David's entire family is committed to David's death not being in vain and will do all we can to ensure another family in this community does not fall victim,” Manning said.
Police said Bustin was originally from Pembroke, Massachusetts, but was recently living at a residence across the street from where he was hit.
Howard stopped at the scene and was not injured, according to police.
Howard’s father shared emotional sentiments after his son’s arraignment on Wednesday.
"It's bad enough that the parents of the other person have to bury their son,” he said. “Two lives are being ruined and extinguished. And his life is forever changed.”
Authorities said a breath test came back negative for alcohol, but they noted that Howard admitted smoking fentanyl before the crash. Police also said officers found marijuana and a smoking pipe in the car.
The judge said she had to allow Howard to go free on personal recognizance because a blood test won't come back for seven days and there was no evidence of him smoking either marijuana or fentanyl.
"The fact that the judge let him off so easy just doesn't seem right," said James Talley, who is Bustin’s friend, said.
Police are seeking anyone who witnessed the crash or has information about it to contact them at 401-468-4343.