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Driver pleads guilty to DUI crash that injured woman

On April 6, a Pennsylvania man pleaded guilty to charges stemming from a drunk driving accident that seriously injured an 80-year-old woman in Thornbury in October 2014. He faces up to six years in state prison.

A witness to the crash said a vehicle was traveling south around 4 p.m. when another vehicle, headed northbound, rounded a sharp corner, crossed the centerline and crashed into it head-on. A police officer who responded to the scene found the driver of the vehicle that was hit, a Thornton woman, pinned between the seat and the dashboard of the vehicle. She suffered multiple fractures to her arms and legs and was transported to the intensive care unit at the Paoli Hospital Trauma Center.

The officer said the driver of the vehicle that had turned the corner, a 34-year-old Malvern man, smelled like alcohol and admitted to drinking "a couple of beers" at a friend's house. He failed a series of field sobriety tests and was found to have a blood alcohol content level of .21 percent, which is nearly three times the legal limit of .08.

The defendant pleaded guilty to DUI and aggravated assault while driving under the influence. He was previously convicted of DUI in 2004 and also when he a teenager, although that conviction no longer counts against his arrest record. A judge has the option of sentencing him to as little as probation and as much as 10 years in prison. Prosecutors have asked for a sentence of three to six years.

When someone suffers catastrophic injuries due to the negligent actions of a drunk driver, they have the option of suing the at-fault driver for damages in civil court. With the help of a lawyer, it may be possible to obtain compensation for current and ongoing medical costs, pain and suffering and more.

Source: Mainline Media News, "More prison time expected for man involved in Chesco DUI crash," Michael P. Rellahan, April 7, 2015

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