By BOB OLIVER
DEARBORN — A 28-year-old Highland Township man was sentenced to 10 days of jail or community service and 18 months of probation for impaired driving during a hayride rollover at Camp Dearborn last year that sent nine people to area hospitals.
Adam Forehand was sentenced by 52nd District Court Judge Robert Bondy March 31.
Forehand pled no contest Feb. 6 to the charge of impaired driving. He was originally charged with reckless riving, a charge with a maximum penalty of 93 days in jail or a $500 fine.
He was supposed to be sentenced March 19 but the matter was adjourned at the request of his attorney.
Forehand, a part-time employee at Camp Dearborn, was driving a tractor towing passengers around the camp for a hayride Oct. 27 when the rollover occurred.
According to published reports, the incident occurred shortly after 5:30 p.m. in Area B of the camp when Forehand attempted to navigate a small hill. The tractor was turning to the left, toward a row of campsites, when the trailer turned over, landed on its side and righted itself again.
All 16 passengers, who were associated with the Henry Ford Community College Support Staff Association, were thrown from the trailer and several riders sustained injuries.
While the riders claimed it was the speed of the tractor that caused the trailer to overturn, Forehand’s attorney David Steingold said his client maintains that though he instructed the riders to remain seated, several stood up and went to the same side of the trailer to throw hay and unbalanced the load.
Steingold said Forehand regretted the incident and was moving forward with his life.
“It’s very unfortunate that this incident occurred,” Steingold said. “(Forehand) has never been in trouble before and he’s a responsible father of three with another on the way.”
According to the police report filed after the incident, Forehand informed the police he had been drinking before the incident and was given a breath test by the officers, registering a blood alcohol content of .06 percent. The legal limit for driving is .08 percent in Michigan.
Forehand said he had consumed alcohol because it was his birthday.
Camp Dearborn is owned by the city of Dearborn though it is in Milford.
(Bob Oliver can be reached at [email protected])