Cedar Rapids Man Charged with Vehicular Homicide, $100,000 Bond Set

By Trish Mehaffey and Dave Franzman, Reporters

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa - A man accused in a hit-and-run accident that resulted in the death of his 30-year-old passenger Sunday was formally charged Tuesday with vehicular homicide and other charges in Linn County District Court.

Jeremy D. Rud, 31, of Cedar Rapids, is charged with vehicular homicide, leaving the scene of an accident, leaving the scene of a personal injury accident and driving with a suspended license. A judge set his bond at $100,000 cash or surety.

Rud is accused of driving a sport-utility vehicle in a reckless manner at the intersection of 16th Avenue and 11 th Street SW, and unintentionally causing the death of his passenger, Jenniffer Hopkins, who was ejected from the vehicle as it collided with another car about 2:30 p.m. Sunday, according to a criminal complaint. Hopkins died at the scene.

According to the complaint, Rud sped through two stop signs before hitting the other vehicle driven by Mark McDowell. Witnesses told police Rud left the scene of the crash, which also caused minor injuries to four children in the McDowell vehicle. Rud was later arrested by police after being discharged from a hospital where he was treated for his injuries.

Rud has previous convictions for three OWI charges, fourth-degree theft and eluding, according to courts online.

Hopkin's mother, Sandy Maish of Cedar Rapids, said Rud and her daughter were friends and he was giving he a ride home on Sunday. Maish said her daughter "was just two and a half blocks from home when the accident happened." She added that Rud "...was also blocks from his home."

Maish said she was aware of Rud's driving record and drunk driving arrests but had no other comment about him leaving the scene of the accident.

But her one final comment about Rud was "unfortunately, he's going to live to see his children."
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