Pastor in Krispy Kreme crash charged with DUI drugs

Published: Apr. 4, 2012 at 6:40 PM EDT|Updated: Apr. 5, 2012 at 3:36 AM EDT
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Jay James Bertrand
Jay James Bertrand

HENRICO, VA (WWBT) - The co-pastor of a Varina church accused of crashing into a Richmond Krispy Kreme, also faces a charge of driving under the influence of drugs for a second crash the same day.

Police say just hours after 47-year-old pastor Jay Bertrand was released from the hospital he got into another accident.

Bertrand's first accident happened when he crossed three lanes of oncoming traffic, hit the sidewalk and crashed into the Krispy Kreme on Broad Street Tuesday, knocked a painter off a ladder along the way, police said.

No one inside the building was hurt, though the painter suffered minor injuries.

According to the pastor's family Bertrand has serious back problems and right before he crashed, they say he had a medical emergency.

"Right before that incident his back locked up on him. He had a back seizure and couldn't move," said Brandon Pickett. "Everything he was taking was under a doctor's care and was prescribed by a doctor, the doctor had given him full liberties to operate machinery, to drive."

Bertrand was taken to the hospital, but police say he refused treatment and left.

"We do know that, that he was released by the hospital and was feeling fine at the time," said Pickett.

Hours later, Bertrand got into another accident, this time in his wife's car, according to police. They say he first failed to move when a light on Patterson Ave. turned green, causing a woman in a vehicle behind him to drive around him.  When she stopped at the Gaskins Road intersection, Bertrand ran into the back of  her vehicle, police said.

The woman was not injured, but Bertrand told the officer he did not remember what happened, claiming he had taken some medications.

Senior pastor at Varina Baptist Church, Jerry Liebert has been consoling the family.

"This is not because of any drug abuse or because of any kind of alcohol abuse…He's a good guy, he's not a trouble maker he's not a law breaker, it's totally circumstantial and he hates it as bad as we do," said Liebert.

"The family is upset about what happened not just to them but to others and the inconvenience this caused to others," said Pickett.

Pastor Bertrand is facing charges of reckless driving for the Krispy Kreme incident and driving under the influence of drugs for the Patterson Avenue crash.

According to the Varina Baptist Church's website, Bertrand serves as co-pastor.

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