City releases 911 tapes from Steve Benjamin's accident - Live5News.com | Charleston, SC | News, Weather, Sports

City releases 911 tapes from Steve Benjamin's accident


COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) - For the first time, 911 calls from a wreck involving Columbia Mayor-elect Steve Benjamin have been made public.

The City of Columbia released audio from three separate 911 calls from the morning of April 21. One caller can be heard saying, "one guy didn't have his lights on."

The victim, 61-year-old Deborah Rubens has been in a coma since her Toyota Tercel collided with Steve Benjamin's Mercedes SUV before 6 a.m., just hours after Benjamin won the mayoral run-off election. He was on his way to media interviews.

Another phone call to 911 appears to be Benjamin himself. Before answering the operator, someone is heard saying, "I know had the green light." After asking the operator to send an ambulance quickly, the caller continues, "It's going to be alright, it's going to be alright."

Benjamin was not hurt in the wreck.

Benjamin is set to become Columbia's first black mayor. His swearing-in ceremony will be July 1 at 6 p.m. on the steps of City Hall.

Rubens' attorney, Rick Detwiler, says she has a brain injury, a broken collarbone and a broken pelvis. Detwiler said she squeezed a friend's hand Wednesday and has opened her eyes temporarily.

Columbia police are investigating.




Related stories:

Benjamin to speak with police about crash

Woman in wreck with mayor-elect still in hospital 

Prayer vigil for Deborah Rubens includes mayor-elect

Surveillance video appears to show mayor-elect's SUV before crash

Police chief on mayor's accident: 'These things take time'

Source: Benjamin's headlights were not on

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press and WIS. All rights reserved.

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