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NJ Woman Charged with Vehicular Homicide Following Crash in Manchester Township

Ocean County

By: Najla Alexander 

Authorities in Ocean County announced that on May 31, Kailyn Gorga, 18, of Toms River, was charged with Vehicular Homicide and Assault by Auto in connection with a motor vehicle crash that occurred in the early morning hours of April 14, 2024, in Manchester Township.AdOcean County Prosecutor Bradley D. Billhimer said on April 14, 2024, at approximately 2:50 a.m., officers from the Manchester Township Police Department responded to the area of Lacey Road in Whiting for a report of a one-car motor vehicle crash.

Officials stated that an investigation by responding Officers revealed that a 2008 Mazda 3, operated by Gorga, and containing rear-seat passengers John Winkowski, 19, and Catalina Reinoso, 18, both of Brick Township, as well as three additional passengers - was traveling southbound on Lacey Road when it struck a center curbed median and overturned.

As a result of the crash, Ms. Reinoso was airlifted to Jersey Shore University Medical Center (JSUMC) in Neptune Township for treatment of her injuries. Mr. Winkowski was likewise taken to JSUMC for treatment of his injuries and thereafter released, officials say. 

The remaining occupants of the vehicle were also treated at JSUMC for minor injuries and subsequently released, officials said. 

According to officials, on April 19, 2024, Ms. Reinoso succumbed to the injuries she sustained in the crash on April 14.

Following the crash, authorities say, a draw of Gorga’s blood was obtained pursuant to a court-authorized warrant. Laboratory results of the initial blood draw taken from Gorga at the hospital revealed her Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) to be .099 %.

In the State of New Jersey, officials said, an operator of a motor vehicle is presumed to be over the legal limit for purposes of alcohol consumption where his/her BAC is .08 or greater.

Officials stated that the laboratory results further revealed that Gorga had an active THC (marijuana) level of 4 nanograms (ng) with a Metabolite THC level of 47 ng.AdOn May 31, 2024, Gorga surrendered herself to Manchester Township Police Headquarters in the presence of her attorney and was charged with Vehicular Homicide and Assault by Auto, officials said. 

Authorities say she was transported to the Ocean County Jail, where she is presently lodged pending a detention hearing.