POMPANO BEACH (CBSMiami) — An arrest has been made in the fatal crash of an 80-year-old man in Pompano Beach.
On Sunday, Maxx Bernstein, 29, from Coral Springs, surrendered himself at the Broward Sheriff’s Office main jail.
The crash occurred on the evening of August 18th as James F. Stewart was headed west on N.E. 14th Street in Pompano Beach and attempted to turn south onto N.E. 27th Terrace.
His Lexus was struck by Bernstein’s BMW, headed east in the right lane, according to police.
“I saw the BMW M-4 speed by with the bike,” said witness Matthew Hinkle. “I heard the boom and I pulled in the parking lot and saw the Lexus on its side.”
On impact, both cars went off the road and knocked a concrete utility pole from its base.
Stewart was pronounced dead at the scene. He lived in a efficiency apartment two blocks away, where he’s been for 30 years.
“My dad passed away a few years ago and it was always a comfort to have Jim here,” said Kenneth Gruneisen, a friend of the victim. “He had been living here for a long time. It was a comfort to have Jim here.”
Investigators said, based on witness accounts and surveillance video, Bernstein was racing a motorcycle just before the crash.
Police say the black box in Bernstein’s BMW indicated that he hit Stewart’s Lexus at 98 miles per hour.
The impact of the accident was so great that a concrete power pole had to be replaced after the cars crashed into it.
Bernstein appeared in bond court Monday, three months after the violent wreck.
He’s had a string of brushes with the law, mostly traffic violations such as speeding. Bernstein was driving with a suspended license at the time of the crash.
He now faces a number of charges including vehicular homicide and reckless driving.