The woman who was driving the car that crashed into trees Sunday in Bridgton, killing her son and boyfriend, told her sister she wasn’t trying to pass anyone, and an eyewitness who was first on the scene agrees.

Candice Tucker, 34, of Gorham, who was driving the Honda sedan south on Route 302, drifted across the centerline because she was distracted by an exchange with her son in the back seat, said her sister Angelique Tucker, who spent the day Monday at Maine Medical Center in Portland, where her sister is recovering from the trauma of the event.

Candice Tucker told her that when she realized she had drifted across the road, she swerved right and hit the brakes, and lost control of the car, Angelique Tucker said.

The car shot off the road about 100 feet and into some trees, the roof crushed by the impact. Candice Tucker’s son Branden Denis, 16, and her boyfriend, Eric S. Morey, 35, were killed in the crash.

Josh Gillespie of Portland said Tucker’s description meshes with what he saw.

“I looked in my rear-view mirror. I just saw her car jerk out really fast and then back and then she lost control,” Gillespie said Tuesday.


Bridgton police said Sunday that Tucker was passing cars at an excessive speed, which contributed to the crash.

But Gillespie said that after speaking with Candice Tucker’s sister, he believes the driver overcorrected and lost control.

Gillespie and his girlfriend were driving south and came upon Tucker’s car going about 45 mph in a 50 mph zone. They passed her, as did the driver behind them.

Tucker told her sister that they had helped some of Morey’s family with a project and were headed south through a section of Route 302 she wasn’t familiar with, Angelique Tucker said. Once the cars passed her she realized she was going too slowly and sped up, Angelique Tucker said.

But at the same time, Denis was fidgeting with a rear window. Tucker was trying to get him to close it because she was cold but he was being obstinate as teenagers sometimes are, Angelique Tucker said. Candice Tucker was looking back at him when Morey called out her name because they had started to turn left. She reacted by braking and swerving to the right.

Gillespie said he saw the car disappear off the side of the road in a cloud of dirt.


“I didn’t really see her coming up for too long before she started to lose control. I truly don’t believe she was trying to pass the car,” he said.

He and his girlfriend, Allison Burnett, stopped and hurried back up the road. They spotted the badly damaged car on its side.

“It was definitely caved in on the passenger side where the doors would be,” he said. The roof and windshield were peeled back.

He used his knife to cut the seat belt that was restraining Tucker, and he and Burnett helped her out and sat her down.

“She was just screaming for her son and her boyfriend asking for us to check on them,” Gillespie said.

Burnett, a certified nursing assistant, checked Denis and Morey for a pulse but found none.


Police have announced no decisions about whether they intend to bring charges in the crash.

Mary Plummer of Naples, the mother of Morey’s three children, said she believes they should.

“I don’t mean to sound like a cold, callous person, because I’m not, but regardless of how many responsibilities you have in life she also should be held accountable for what she did,” Plummer said. “That could have been my kids in that car or coming down the road.”

The families of Denis and Morey were making funeral arrangements Tuesday.

Denis, a member of Gorham High School’s football team, was mourned this week by classmates and family members.

Morey is survived by his children: Emma, 4, Tyler, 6, and Elizabeth, 7.


“He did love his kids,” Plummer said.

Morey was a roofer and masterful at fixing things, she said.

“Eric was a craftsman. He could make anything and everything. If you could show it to him, he could build it,” she said. He was especially fond of working on his cars, like a Monte Carlo he owned once or his pickup,

Angelique Tucker said that Morey and her sister had been dating for eight or nine months and he brought her happiness that she hadn’t known before in a relationship. Morey had moved in with her three weeks earlier and her children and others in the family were fond of him.

Visiting hours for Denis will be from 4 to 7 p.m. Friday in the auditorium at Gorham High School followed by a funeral service at 7 p.m.

Arrangements for Morey were still being made.

Comments are no longer available on this story