Kevin Roper, truck driver, pleads not guilty in Tracy Morgan crash

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Kevin Roper, truck driver, pleads not guilty in Tracy Morgan crash
In this image from video the limousine bus carrying Tracy Morgan and six other people lies on it's side early Saturday morning June 7, 2014 on the New Jersey Turnpike. Morgan remained hospitalized as state and federal officials continued their investigation of the six-vehicle crash on the New Jersey Turnpike that took the life of a Morgan friend and left two others seriously injured, authorities say. (AP Photo/Will Vaultz Photography)
FILE - This April 28, 2012 file photo shows Tracy Morgan at The 2012 Comedy Awards in New York. Billboard announced Wednesday, April 17, 2013 that the 44-year-old will host the awards show on May 19, 2013 from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Charles Sykes, File)
In this image from video the Wal-Mart truck involved in the crash of the limousine bus carrying Tracy Morgan and six other people is seen early Saturday morning June 7, 2014 on the New Jersey Turnpike at the accident scene. Morgan remained hospitalized as state and federal officials continued their investigation of the six-vehicle crash on the New Jersey Turnpike that took the life of a Morgan friend and left two others seriously injured, authorities say. Wal-Mart President Bill Simon said in a statement a Wal-Mart truck was involved and that the company "will take full responsibility" if authorities determine that its truck caused the accident. (AP Photo/Will Vaultz Photography)
Kevin Roper, center, arrives with his attorney David Jay Glassman, left, for a court appearance Wednesday, June 11, 2014, in New Brunswick, N.J. Roper, a Wal-Mart truck driver from Georgia, was charged with death by auto and four counts of assault by auto in the wake of a deadly chain-reaction crash on the New Jersey Turnpike early Saturday, June 7, 2014, that killed comedian James McNair and left actor-comedian Tracy Morgan and two others critically injured. (AP Photo/Mel Evans)
NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - JUNE 11: Kevin Roper arrives for a court appearance at Middlesex County Courthouse on June 11, 2014 in New Brunswick, New Jersey. Roper is the Walmart truck driver accused of causing the accident that critically injured comedian Tracy Morgan on Saturday, June 7. (Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 06: Tracy Morgan speaks onstage at Spike TV's 'Don Rickles: One Night Only' on May 6, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images for Spike TV)
In this image from video the limousine bus carrying Tracy Morgan and six other people lies on it's side, left, as emergency responders work the accident scene early Saturday morning June 7, 2014 on the New Jersey Turnpike. Morgan remained hospitalized as state and federal officials continued their investigation of the six-vehicle crash on the New Jersey Turnpike that took the life of a Morgan friend and left two others seriously injured, authorities say. (AP Photo/Will Vaultz Photography)
Kevin Roper, second right, tries to walk past cameras blocking him as he arrives for a court appearance Wednesday, June 11, 2014, in New Brunswick, N.J. Roper, a Wal-Mart truck driver from Georgia, was charged with death by auto and four counts of assault by auto in the wake of a deadly chain-reaction crash on the New Jersey Turnpike early Saturday, June 7, 2014, that killed comedian James McNair and left actor-comedian Tracy Morgan and two others critically injured. (AP Photo/Mel Evans)
Kevin Roper, walks past cameras blocking him as he arrives for a court appearance Wednesday, June 11, 2014, in New Brunswick, N.J. Roper, a Wal-Mart truck driver from Georgia, was charged with death by auto and four counts of assault by auto in the wake of a deadly chain-reaction crash on the New Jersey Turnpike early Saturday, June 7, 2014, that killed comedian James McNair and left actor-comedian Tracy Morgan and two others critically injured. (AP Photo/Mel Evans)
This photo provided by the New Jersey State Police shows Kevin Roper. Roper, a Wal-Mart truck driver from Georgia, was charged with death by auto and four counts of assault by auto in the wake of a deadly chain-reaction crash on the New Jersey Turnpike early Saturday, June 7, 2014, that left actor-comedian Tracy Morgan and two others critically injured and another man dead. (AP Photo/New Jersey State Police)
NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - JUNE 11: Kevin Roper arrives for a court appearance at Middlesex County Courthouse on June 11, 2014 in New Brunswick, New Jersey. Roper is the Walmart truck driver accused of causing the accident that critically injured comedian Tracy Morgan on Saturday, June 7. (Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images)
NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - JUNE 11: Kevin Roper arrives for a court appearance at Middlesex County Courthouse on June 11, 2014 in New Brunswick, New Jersey. Roper is the Walmart truck driver accused of causing the accident that critically injured comedian Tracy Morgan on Saturday, June 7. (Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images)
NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - JUNE 11: Kevin Roper arrives for a court appearance at Middlesex County Courthouse on June 11, 2014 in New Brunswick, New Jersey. Roper is the Walmart truck driver accused of causing the accident that critically injured comedian Tracy Morgan on Saturday, June 7. (Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images)
NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - JUNE 11: Kevin Roper arrives for a court appearance at Middlesex County Courthouse on June 11, 2014 in New Brunswick, New Jersey. Roper is the Walmart truck driver accused of causing the accident that critically injured comedian Tracy Morgan on Saturday, June 7. (Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images)
NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - JUNE 11: Kevin Roper arrives for a court appearance at Middlesex County Courthouse on June 11, 2014 in New Brunswick, New Jersey. Roper is the Walmart truck driver accused of causing the accident that critically injured comedian Tracy Morgan on Saturday, June 7. (Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images)
NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - JUNE 11: Kevin Roper arrives for a court appearance at Middlesex County Courthouse on June 11, 2014 in New Brunswick, New Jersey. Roper is the Walmart truck driver accused of causing the accident that critically injured comedian Tracy Morgan on Saturday, June 7. (Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images)
NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - JUNE 11: Kevin Roper arrives for a court appearance at Middlesex County Courthouse on June 11, 2014 in New Brunswick, New Jersey. Roper is the Walmart truck driver accused of causing the accident that critically injured comedian Tracy Morgan on Saturday, June 7. (Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images)
NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - JUNE 11: Kevin Roper arrives for a court appearance at Middlesex County Courthouse on June 11, 2014 in New Brunswick, New Jersey. Roper is the Walmart truck driver accused of causing the accident that critically injured comedian Tracy Morgan on Saturday, June 7. (Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images)
NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - JUNE 11: Kevin Roper arrives for a court appearance at Middlesex County Courthouse on June 11, 2014 in New Brunswick, New Jersey. Roper is the Walmart truck driver accused of causing the accident that critically injured comedian Tracy Morgan on Saturday, June 7. (Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images)
NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - JUNE 11: Kevin Roper arrives for a court appearance at Middlesex County Courthouse on June 11, 2014 in New Brunswick, New Jersey. Roper is the Walmart truck driver accused of causing the accident that critically injured comedian Tracy Morgan on Saturday, June 7. (Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images)
NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - JUNE 11: Kevin Roper arrives for a court appearance at Middlesex County Courthouse on June 11, 2014 in New Brunswick, New Jersey. Roper is the Walmart truck driver accused of causing the accident that critically injured comedian Tracy Morgan on Saturday, June 7. (Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images)
NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - JUNE 11: Kevin Roper arrives for a court appearance at Middlesex County Courthouse on June 11, 2014 in New Brunswick, New Jersey. Roper is the Walmart truck driver accused of causing the accident that critically injured comedian Tracy Morgan on Saturday, June 7. (Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images)
NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - JUNE 11: Kevin Roper arrives for a court appearance at Middlesex County Courthouse on June 11, 2014 in New Brunswick, New Jersey. Roper is the Walmart truck driver accused of causing the accident that critically injured comedian Tracy Morgan on Saturday, June 7. (Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images)
Traffic moves pass the scene of a serious accident at milepost 71 on the northbound lanes of New Jersey Turnpike on Saturday, June 7, 2014 near Cranbury, N.J. Comedian Tracy Morgan is in critical condition following an early morning accident on the New Jersey Turnpike. The comedian was injured in a crash involving six vehicles that left at least one person dead and several others, including Morgan, with serious injuries. (AP Photo/David Gard)
This Friday, April 21, 2013 image released by South Beach Comedy Festival shows comedian Tracy Morgan performing during the 8th Annual South Beach Comedy Festival in Miami Beach, Fla. The comedy festival runs through April 21. (AP Photo/South Beach Comedy Festival 2013, Mitchell Zachs)
Host Tracy Morgan speaks on stage at the Billboard Music Awards at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on Sunday, May 19, 2013 in Las Vegas. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)
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NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. (AP) -- Accident investigators are looking into what role the work commute of the driver charged in the accident that injured comedian Tracy Morgan played in the fatal crash on the New Jersey Turnpike.

Wal-Mart driver Kevin Roper, who pleaded not guilty to death by auto and assault by auto charges Wednesday, lived in Georgia, but his job was based in Delaware, NTSB spokeswoman Kelly Nantel said.

A criminal complaint alleges that the 35-year-old Roper, of Jonesboro, Georgia, hadn't slept for more than 24 hours before the accident when he allegedly swerved to avoid slowed traffic on the turnpike and plowed into Morgan's limo on Saturday morning.

Wal-Mart has not explained what Roper's driving route was. The company has said it believes he was in compliance with federal safety regulations.

Roper's bail was kept at $50,000. Roper and his attorney, David Glassman, declined to speak with reporters after the brief hearing.

A conviction on a death by auto charge carries a five-to-10-year prison sentence. Each assault by auto charge is punishable by up to 18 months in prison.

The 45-year-old Morgan suffered a broken femur, a broken nose and several broken ribs. His friend and fellow comedian James McNair was killed, and two other passengers were seriously injured. Another passenger was treated and released from the hospital Saturday, and the limo driver and one more passenger weren't injured.

Morgan underwent surgery for his broken leg and remained in critical but stable condition.

State police on Tuesday released audio recordings from three 911 calls made after the accident.

"It's a terrible accident," a woman tells the dispatcher in one of the calls. "The car flipped. It's on its side. It's two vehicles and a Wal-Mart truck."

Citing the criminal investigation, a Wal-Mart spokeswoman wouldn't say Tuesday where Roper's trip had originated or where he was headed at the time of the crash.

FX Networks issued a statement Tuesday saying Morgan's new TV series, a half-hour comedy scheduled to start filming in August for a January premiere on the FXX network, would be waiting for him once he's well.

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