SUV driver charged in restaurant crash

Onondaga County Sheriff's deputies have charged the driver of a car that crashed into the Pier 57 restaurant in Liverpool Monday afternoon. Investigators say 35-year-old Clifton Reynolds, of Gaskin Road, was driving the SUV that hit the restaurant.

Deputies say Reynolds first hit a car operated by 32-year-old Jigishaben Patel, of Maple View, New York. She and her five-year-old son Kush were not hurt.

Reynolds was taken to University Hospital, but his injuries are not considered life threatening.

Reynolds is being charged with common law driving while intoxicated, driving while intoxicated-drugs, unlawful possession of marijuana, aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle in the 2nd degree, imprudent speed, and driving left of the center line.

Posted earlier:

A local restaurant is cleaning up after an SUV crashed into its front entrance Wednesday afternoon.

Around 2:30 p.m. Wednesday, a sport utility vehicle traveling north on County Route 57 struck a car also headed north, pushing that car approximately 50 yards down the road. The SUV then veered into the parking lot of the Pier 57 restaurant , struck a parked car, went airborne, and crashed into the lobby of the restaurant.

Police investigators tell CNY Central that they do not yet know the identity of the driver. Deputies say the driver was unconscious when they arrived on the scene. He had to be extracted from the vehicle and was taken to Upstate University Hospital. Police say they do not know the man's condition, but his injuries were not life threatening. Investigators don TMt know if alcohol was involved.

Two people were in the car that was hit on the road. Police say they were shaken up, but had no significant injuries.

One witness, who works at the nearby Kirby's restaurant, says the SUV was "mutilated" by the crash. She added "If you saw this car, you wouldn't believe they got him out."

Pier 57 owner Bill Ennis was in his restaurant when the SUV went through the front door.

"We knew the glass had broken but we didn't know what caused the glass to break," Ennis says. "Everyone ran to the front of the building and saw basically the car in the lobby, so to speak. We immediately called 911, people were checking on the driver, just getting everyone out of the building."

Engineers are now checking out the restaurant for any stability issues. Ennis says he hopes to reopen by Friday.