Charles County authorities arrested a Waldorf man last week and charged him with negligent manslaughter and reckless driving in a motorcycle accident on Route 301 last year that left one man dead.

Jermane L. Gartrell, 31, was released Wednesday after posting a $5,000 bond in Charles County Circuit Court. A grand jury handed up an indictment against Gartrell on March 7, but it remained sealed until he surrendered Tuesday.

Authorities allege that Gartrell and Tommy R. Marsh were racing on their motorcycles May 19 while heading north on Route 301 after an event at Maryland International Raceway in Budds Creek.

Their motorcycles, which witnesses said appeared to be traveling much faster than the posted speed limit, struck a car that pulled out of the parking lot of Apehangers, a tavern in Bel Alton.

Marsh was killed, and Gartrell suffered serious injuries when the two were ejected from their motorcycles.

Jerome Spencer, the assistant state's attorney handling the case, declined to discuss specifics.

Gartrell did not return a message, left with a friend, seeking comment. Defense attorney Andy Alpert said James R. Gillespie, the motorist who was leaving Apehangers, was at fault in the accident, not Gartrell.

Gillespie, 51, of Oxon Hill, was found guilty of driving under the influence in connection with the accident and was sentenced to 12 months in jail March 13. according to Charles County District Court records.

In Maryland, one can be charged with manslaughter for "grossly negligent" behavior that leads to the death of another person, even if the other person was also behaving badly, according to one law enforcement source.

-- Michael Amon