The man who struck and killed high-energy “American Idol” wannabe Alexis Cohen last year in Seaside Heights, New Jersey, was indicted on Thursday and charged with aggravated manslaughter and other crimes in the incident.
According to the Asbury Park Press, a grand jury handed up a four-count indictment on 24-year-old Daniel J. Bark , charging him with aggravated manslaughter, death by auto, eluding police and knowingly leaving the scene of an accident that resulted in a death in the late-night July 25 incident that took the life of 25-year-old Cohen.
The singer was best known for her raucous attitude and a lively banter with judges that made her an audience favorite when she unsuccessfully tried out for “Idol” in seasons seven and eight. Her lifeless body was found on the street in a residential New Jersey neighborhood around 5 a.m. last July after police said she’d been struck by a vehicle, suffering fatal head and torso injuries.
An hour before Cohen’s body was discovered, Bark was stopped by Seaside Heights police, who issued a number of motor-vehicle summonses, including driving while intoxicated, according to the paper. Those summonses were executed after Bark allegedly fled from officers pursuing him on bicycle and he struck a parked car in the parking lot of a popular local nightspot, Hemingway’s. He fled into the vicinity of Cohen’s fatality, and when officers in patrol cars eventually stopped him a few blocks away, they were able to connect him to Cohen’s death.
Police also determined that Cohen, a native of Allentown, Pennsylvania, had been drinking that night as well. If convicted, Bark is facing a prison term of 10 to 30 years for the aggravated manslaughter charge, along with an additional five to 10 years for the charges of eluding police, death by auto and leaving the scene of a fatal accident. He remains in jail, unable to post the $150,000 bail.