NORTH BERGEN — A suspended Hudson County corrections officer will face more serious charges because prosecutors say he had been drinking before the accident that killed two people and then went to two more bars afterward.

According to, Michael Hansen, 38, was charged with two counts of death by auto during a detention hearing on Wednesday. The report, citing prosecutors at the hearing, said Hansen's blood alcohol level was .27 when he was arrested nine hours after the accident on April 2.

Hansen faces charges after he allegedly was driving in Jersey City and fatally hit Jersey City Republican Chairman Russell Maffei and Assembly candidate Marie Tauro. The two were crossing the street near the Coach House restaurant after a meeting with other party officials. Hansen then drove away and went to drink more before he was arrested, prosecutors allege.

After the charges were upgraded, Judge Paul DePascale ordered Hansen released. A statement from Hansen attorney John Appello said in a "high profile case" like this, he believes "the judge made the right decision."

More From New Jersey 101.5


Contact reporter Adam Hochron at 609-359-5326 or