Video shows truck destroying Nantucket landmark in head-on crash

Crime

According to the Nantucket Historical Association, this is the 13th time a driver has crashed into the Main Street Fountain.

A Nantucket landmark was destroyed by a truck Sunday night in what was reportedly a hit-and-run. 

The crash, which toppled the Main Street Fountain, was caught on video. The footage shows a white pick-up truck drive straight toward and through the fountain. 

The Nantucket Current reported that the crash happened just after 10:30 p.m. when a white Chevy Silverado hit the fountain head-on, sending pieces of the fountain flying as far as 30 yards. The truck then fled the area. 

According to the Nantucket Historical Association, the fountain dates back to 1886, but has been knocked over by drivers at least 13 times. It was last hit by a car in March 2020. 

WCVB reported that 55-year-old Nantucket resident Michael Holdgate has been identified as the driver in Sunday’s crash. The Current reported that he is owner of Holdgate’s Island Laundry, as well as the truck that toppled the fountain.

Holdgate was arrested Sunday night while police were investigating the crash, the Current reported. Police reportedly found the truck involved in the crash in the parking area behind Holdgate’s business. 

According to court documents regarding Holdgate’s arrest, officers were “investigating a crash” Sunday when a white van accelerated “unsafely” into the Vesper Lane driveway in which they were standing.

“This vehicle was operating in an unsafe, negligent manner,” police wrote. “A reasonable person would have slowed down turning into a driveway that had 3 marked police vehicles in it.”

The driver identified himself as Holdgate, owner of the van “and the truck from the crash,” according to court documents. Allegedly, Holdgate was visibly drunk and refused field sobriety tests. Though he claimed to have had only one beer that night, a breathalyzer test later registered his blood-alcohol level as being .147, police said. 

Police charged Holdgate with operating under the influence, his second such offense, and negligent operation. He was arraigned Monday in Nantucket District Court and was released on personal recognizance, according to court records.

It is unclear whether Holdgate will be charged in connection with the hit-and-run crash with the fountain. 

Holdgate’s attorney, James Merberg, declined to comment on the charges Monday. Holdgate is due back in court on Nov. 20 for a pretrial hearing. 


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