Woman accused of plowing car into group after argument, killing one

Updated: May 14, 2008, 8:27 PM ET
Associated Press

NASHUA, N.H. -- A woman accused of running down a man in her car after a Red Sox-Yankees argument in a bar never hit her brakes as she accelerated toward the small group he was in, a prosecutor said Monday.

"She never braked, and she accelerated at a high speed for about 200 feet. She went directly at this group of people," prosecutor Susan Morrell said of Ivonne Hernandez, who is charged with reckless second-degree murder in the death early Friday of Matthew Beaudoin, 29.

[+] EnlargeIvonne Hernandez
AP Photo/Nashua Police Dept.Ivonne Hernandez is charged with reckless second-degree murder after allegedly gunning her car and speeding into a group of people outside a Nashua bar.

Hernandez was ordered held without bail after being arraigned Monday in Nashua District Court. The charges, including aggravated drunken driving, are felonies, so Hernandez could not enter a plea.

Her public defender, James Quay, did not immediately return a call seeking comment.

Authorities won't describe the argument beforehand in Slade's Food & Spirits, but witnesses said it heated up when Hernandez identified herself as a New York Yankees fan. Nashua, 45 miles northwest of Boston, is Red Sox country.

Bartender Tanya Moran said the argument spilled outside, and at least one person in a group that included Beaudoin began chanting "Yankees suck!" when they saw a Yankees sticker on Hernandez's car.

Hernandez, 43, allegedly gunned her car and struck Beaudoin and his friend Maria Hughes, 21. Beaudoin's sister, Faith Beaudoin, said Hughes had only minor injuries because her brother shielded her. Beaudoin died of massive head trauma at a hospital, Morrell said.

Hernandez, of Nashua, was arrested at the scene. She acknowledged she had been drinking and refused to take a breath-alcohol test, said Morrell, a senior assistant attorney general. Hernandez said she had been in an argument with the group.

"She indicated to police that she wanted to scare this group of people. She thought they would get out of the way," Morrell said.

Moran told The Telegraph of Nashua during the weekend that Beaudoin came to the bar regularly to socialize, sing karaoke and have fun.

"He came to hang out. He didn't really drink much," she said.

Chris Lovett, a disc jockey at Slade's, told the New Hampshire Union Leader that Beaudoin kept to himself and "wasn't an instigator."

Faith Beaudoin said her brother, who lived in Nashua, was a 1997 graduate of Nashua High School who worked dealing poker at Sharky's Poker Room in Manchester and Nashua. She said his organs, including his heart, liver and kidneys, were donated in hopes of saving other people's lives.

"He was always helping people when he was alive, and he's still saving lives," she said, choking back tears.


Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press