Ronald Schmidt said the accident happened on his way to work.
Police say Gooden, 45, hit Schmidt's car from behind.
"I looked at him and said Dwight Gooden. He said yes. I think he was a little surprised that I recognized him. He shook my hand and I said, 'I've always admired you,'" Schmidt explained.
Schmidt is a big fan of the one time all star, Cy Young award winner and World Series champ.
"I called 911 right away. I told him I was going to do that and he said fine," Schmidt said.
Franklin lakes police say Gooden was anything but fine.
They say he was under the influence of a "controlled dangerous substance" and had his 5 year old son in the car with him, but not in a car seat.
It's just latest in a string of run-ins with the law.
In 2002, he was arrested and charged with drunk driving. He pleaded guilty to reckless driving.
In 2003, he was arrested for driving with a suspended license.
In 2005, he was arrested for punching his girlfriend and released on a misdemeanor battery charge. That same year he was arrested for drunk driving.
In 2006, he was arrested for violating probation. He spent 8 months in jail.
Schmidt wouldn't say if Gooden looked under the influence. He's been advised by his attorney not to.
Gooden was charged with driving under the influence of a controlled dangerous substance, endangering the welfare of a child, driving while under the influence of drugs, DWI with a child passenger, leaving the scene of a motor vehicle accident, reckless driving, failure to keep right and failure to notify change of address regarding driver's license
Gooden was released on his own recognizance.
Gooden made his major league debut with the New York Mets at just 19 years old. He was the youngest All-Star selection in history, as well as the youngest recipient of the Cy Young Award. A four-time All-Star selection and a three-time World Series champion, Gooden was voted the NL Rookie of the Year in 1984.