Police have arrested a 23-year-old New Jersey man in connection with Saturday morning’s hit-and-run death of two-time [url id=”/news/topic/american_idol/index.jhtml”]”American Idol”[/url] contestant Alexis Cohen. The Asbury Park Journal reports that Daniel Bark was arrested at 6 p.m. on Sunday and charged with causing Cohen’s death by reckless driving and then leaving the scene of a collision.
Cohen, 25, the defiant blonde who auditioned for “Idol” in seasons seven and eight, became a fan favorite thanks to her clashes with judge Simon Cowell, who referred to her as the “Green Goblin” after her first high-energy auditions. Proudly proclaiming that she marched “to the beat of a different drummer,” the Allentown, Pennsylvania native who shared a studio apartment with her mom didn’t impress with her cover of Jefferson Airplane’s “Somebody to Love” in 2007.
She seemed humbled by the judges’ criticisms at first, but then exploded once outside the audition room, dubbing the acerbic Brit Cowell “egotistical” when he failed to put her through to the Hollywood round, and vowing to go into acting instead after flipping the camera a double bird and ranting to Cowell to “Take it, take it, take it!”
Cohen was struck by a car early Saturday morning in Seaside Heights, New Jersey, and found around 5 a.m. by two passersby, who reported the death to 911. She was pronounced dead two hours later at the Community Medical Center in Toms River, New Jersey. Autopsy results showed that she had suffered chest, head and abdominal injuries. Cohen’s body was found 350 yards away from her car, which was parked in a nearby lot. Police said it was unclear if Cohen was returning to her car when she was struck.
If convicted in Cohen’s death, Bark could serve 10 to 15 years in jail. He is currently being held in the Ocean County Jail in Toms River on $35,000 bail.