Truck driver who struck Tracy Morgan’s van pleads guilty

Tracy Morgan
FILE - In this April 28, 2012, file photo, Tracy Morgan attends The Comedy Awards in New York. Morgan has returned to his familiar stage, hosting “Saturday Night Live” for the first time Saturday Oct. 17, 2015, since a vehicle crash left him in a coma, which provided material for his opening monologue. (AP Photo/Charles Sykes, FILE)

NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. (AP) – The truck driver who slammed into the back of a van carrying actor-comedian Tracy Morgan and several other people, killing one of them, has pleaded guilty and could avoid jail.

Kevin Roper entered the plea Tuesday in New Brunswick to charges of vehicular homicide and four counts of aggravated assault.

Roper was driving a Wal-Mart truck in June 2014 when he crashed into Morgan’s van on the New Jersey Turnpike.

Comedian James McNair died, and Morgan and three other passengers were injured. Morgan suffered a broken leg, broken ribs and head injuries.

The 37-year-old Roper, of Jonesboro, Georgia, faced counts including aggravated manslaughter, vehicular homicide and aggravated assault.

Under terms of his plea, he can avoid prison if he performs community service and satisfies other conditions over the next three years.

(Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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