Man charged in crash that killed Duvall woman near Monroe

A warrant for Roman Berkovich was issued this month. He’s accused of vehicular homicide in the death of Sophie Theriault.

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MONROE — An Edmonds man has been charged with vehicular homicide for a car crash that killed Sophie Theriault, 20, of Duvall in 2020.

Roman Berkovich, 35, reportedly told police he was driving a BMW with Theriault in the passenger seat on the night of Dec. 2, 2020, according to charging papers signed by deputy prosecutor Tobin Darrow. Around 10:20 p.m., sheriff’s deputies were called to a crash near 21400 High Rock Road, about four miles south of Monroe.

Deputies arrived to find the BMW crashed off the road, down an embankment “tangled up in the brush and trees,” the charges say. First responders found Berkovich lying unconscious outside the driver’s side of the BMW. Theriault’s body was found in the brush. She was pronounced dead at the scene, Darrow wrote.

Berkovich was transported to a hospital. He reportedly told sheriff’s deputies he and Theriault had watched a movie earlier in the evening and had been on their way to get cigarettes when a deer ran into the road, causing him to steer sharply right to avoid it.

Deputies reportedly smelled alcohol on Berkovich and noticed his eyes were bloodshot and watery. The defendant reported he drank one glass of wine with dinner, the charges say. Deputies applied for a search warrant to take a sample of Berkovich’s blood, but it was not authorized. A doctor at Providence Regional Medical Center Everett evaluated Berkovich in the emergency room. His reports indicated the defendant was “intoxicated, with some pressured speech and tangential thought patterns,” Darrow wrote.

A crash scene expert noted the tire friction marks indicated the driver failed to turn at high speed, the charges say, and did not find any evidence of steering to the right as Berkovich had claimed.

According to the BMW’s event data recorder, the car was travelling at 98 mph five seconds prior to deployment of its airbags. The speed limit on that section of road was 35 mph, Darrow wrote.

A warrant for Berkovich’s arrest was issued this month with a request that he be held with bail set at $1 million.

In 2013, the defendant was convicted of a DUI in New York, Darrow wrote. And in July 2021, he was arrested for investigation of driving under the influence on I-5.

As of Friday afternoon, Berkovich had not been booked into the Snohomish County Jail.

Family of Theriault paid tribute to her life with an obituary and photos.

“Sophie Theriault really stood out was the way she so deeply connected with so many people,” the obituary reads. “She had a capacity to listen, inspire, and hold. She truly, truly loved everyone, and in this difficult world, that takes courage. She loved fearlessly and with reckless abandon. We all felt it, and we will all miss that boundless generosity.”

Ellen Dennis: 425-339-3486;; Twitter: @reporterellen.

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