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Trial Underway For I-80 Wrong-Way Driver Charged In Fatal Crash


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Trial Under Way for I-80 Wrong-way Driver Charged in Fatal Crash

 

CLEARFIELD – The trial got under way Wednesday for a Johnsonburg woman who drove the wrong way on Interstate 80, causing a crash that killed a DuBois man while she was allegedly under the influence of drugs.

State police testified that reports show Shara M. Franco, 35, was under the influence of methamphetamine and fentanyl when she sideswiped a tractor-trailer and then struck a second vehicle nearly head on, killing Ryan Muirhead, 43, on March 7, 2020 near mile-marker 99 in Clearfield County.

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Franco is charged with homicide by vehicle while DUI, homicide by vehicle, four counts of aggravated assault by vehicle while DUI, and four counts of aggravated assault by vehicle, all felonies, and misdemeanor counts of DUI, involuntary manslaughter and recklessly endangering another person.

According to arresting Trooper Seth Gould, two adult and one juvenile passengers in the second vehicle sustained serious, life-altering injuries in the crash.

Upon arrival at the scene, he heard a six-year-old juvenile screaming for her mom, and saw she had a serious facial laceration. She was bleeding profusely, he said.

Gould also heard a woman and man screaming for help from within the vehicle, and they were removed by mechanical means. All three passengers and Franco were flown from the scene.

The trooper said Franco had been traveling westbound in the eastbound lane when her Chevrolet truck struck a tractor-trailer, then a second vehicle nearly head on.

Gould was able to speak with Franco on-scene and she reportedly told him that she wasn’t the driver at the time of the crash, and was at a bus stop in Pittsburgh.

Even though she appeared to know she was in the back of an ambulance vehicle at the time, he said Franco still believed she was in Pittsburgh.

Interstate 80 was closed for several hours as a result of the crash, Gould said, noting it was a sunny March day and roadway conditions were dry and not a factor in the crash.

Trooper John Romeo of the Holidaysburg-based state police responded to UPMC Altoona at the request of Gould to obtain a legal blood draw from Franco.

Romeo said the phlebotomist had issues drawing a blood sample, and it was ultimately taken by a registered nurse through an IV. He said Franco agreed to speak with him and admitted she’d “probably” have meth and Fentanyl in her system.

Jurors also heard testimony from truck driver Richard Hughes, Troopers Danielle Marshall-Oare, Bernie Snyder and Robert Manno, Jefferson County 911 Coordinator Chris Clark, UPMC Altoona RN Maria Lauder and phlebotomist Mikayla Worlinsky.

District Attorney Ryan Sayers and First Assistant District Attorney Leanne Nedza are prosecuting the case on behalf of the commonwealth. Franco is being represented by defense attorney William A. Shaw Jr.

Clearfield County President Judge Fredric Ammerman is presiding over the trial, which resumes at 9 a.m. Thursday in Courtroom No. 1. The trial is scheduled to run through Friday.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  https://gantnews.com/2021/04/15/trial-under-way-for-i-80-wrong-way-driver-charged-in-fatal-crash/

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4 hours ago, mr.d said:

Trial Under Way for I-80 Wrong-way Driver Charged in Fatal Crash

 

CLEARFIELD – The trial got under way Wednesday for a Johnsonburg woman who drove the wrong way on Interstate 80, causing a crash that killed a DuBois man while she was allegedly under the influence of drugs.

State police testified that reports show Shara M. Franco, 35, was under the influence of methamphetamine and fentanyl when she sideswiped a tractor-trailer and then struck a second vehicle nearly head on, killing Ryan Muirhead, 43, on March 7, 2020 near mile-marker 99 in Clearfield County.

27.

Franco is charged with homicide by vehicle while DUI, homicide by vehicle, four counts of aggravated assault by vehicle while DUI, and four counts of aggravated assault by vehicle, all felonies, and misdemeanor counts of DUI, involuntary manslaughter and recklessly endangering another person.

According to arresting Trooper Seth Gould, two adult and one juvenile passengers in the second vehicle sustained serious, life-altering injuries in the crash.

Upon arrival at the scene, he heard a six-year-old juvenile screaming for her mom, and saw she had a serious facial laceration. She was bleeding profusely, he said.

Gould also heard a woman and man screaming for help from within the vehicle, and they were removed by mechanical means. All three passengers and Franco were flown from the scene.

The trooper said Franco had been traveling westbound in the eastbound lane when her Chevrolet truck struck a tractor-trailer, then a second vehicle nearly head on.

Gould was able to speak with Franco on-scene and she reportedly told him that she wasn’t the driver at the time of the crash, and was at a bus stop in Pittsburgh.

Even though she appeared to know she was in the back of an ambulance vehicle at the time, he said Franco still believed she was in Pittsburgh.

Interstate 80 was closed for several hours as a result of the crash, Gould said, noting it was a sunny March day and roadway conditions were dry and not a factor in the crash.

Trooper John Romeo of the Holidaysburg-based state police responded to UPMC Altoona at the request of Gould to obtain a legal blood draw from Franco.

Romeo said the phlebotomist had issues drawing a blood sample, and it was ultimately taken by a registered nurse through an IV. He said Franco agreed to speak with him and admitted she’d “probably” have meth and Fentanyl in her system.

Jurors also heard testimony from truck driver Richard Hughes, Troopers Danielle Marshall-Oare, Bernie Snyder and Robert Manno, Jefferson County 911 Coordinator Chris Clark, UPMC Altoona RN Maria Lauder and phlebotomist Mikayla Worlinsky.

District Attorney Ryan Sayers and First Assistant District Attorney Leanne Nedza are prosecuting the case on behalf of the commonwealth. Franco is being represented by defense attorney William A. Shaw Jr.

Clearfield County President Judge Fredric Ammerman is presiding over the trial, which resumes at 9 a.m. Thursday in Courtroom No. 1. The trial is scheduled to run through Friday.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  https://gantnews.com/2021/04/15/trial-under-way-for-i-80-wrong-way-driver-charged-in-fatal-crash/

I hope she gets the book thrown at her. She will never feel the pain this family holds and what they deal with everyday since. Stabby was a great guy with the biggest heart. He's gonna be missed. This day changed a lot of peoples lives.  Love and cherish every moment because tomorrow is not promised. 

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DA: Woman charged in fatal wrong-way crash on I-80 pleads guilty


by WJAC staff

DuBois I-80 fatal crash (WJAC)
DuBois I-80 fatal crash (WJAC)
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DUBOIS, Pa (WJAC) — According to Clearfield County District Attorney Ryan Sayers, the woman charged in the fatal wrong-way crash along Interstate 80 in DuBois last year that claimed the life of a 43-year-old man plead guilty in court Thursday.

RELATED| Woman charged in fatal wrong-way crash on Interstate 80 in DuBois, court docs say

Authorities say now 35-year-old Shara Franco was charged with homicide by vehicle while driving under the influence after clipping a tractor-trailer and crashing into a family of four in March of 2020.

Investigators later identified the victim of the fatal crash as 43-year-old Ryan Muirhead, of DuBois.

MORE| Coroner: Driver killed in I-80 crash identified; officials also identify wrong-way driver

The other victims of the crash were flown to nearby hospitals with severe injuries.

On Thursday, Franco plead guilty to homicide by vehicle while driving under the influence, 2 counts of aggravated assault by vehicle while driving under the influence, DUI and other summary offenses.

Sayers says that the homicide by vehicle charge carries a sentence of three years and each count of aggravated assault carries a one-year sentence, meaning Franco will serve a minimum of five years in prison.

https://wjactv.com/news/local/da-woman-charged-in-fatal-wrong-way-crash-on-i-80-pleads-guilty

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1 hour ago, momtothree said:

That is not justice at all.  It is downright sickening that you can kill someone and serve only 5 years.  

 

 

One of the witnesses didnt show up otherwise it could have been higher.  Judge Ammerman immediately put a warrant for that persons absence. I think some serious jail time is coming for that person too. 

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She hasn't been sentenced yet.  She just plead guilty.   The absolute minimum she can service is 3 years if all charges are concurrent, because of grading and sentencing guide lines.  Homicide by vehicle has a 3yr min, on up to 10 years.   Then factor in the rest, which the judge could run a mix of concurrent or consecutive. 

Odds are she will get more, but not the maximum because she plead guilty.

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6 hours ago, jaman said:

One of the witnesses didnt show up otherwise it could have been higher.  Judge Ammerman immediately put a warrant for that persons absence. I think some serious jail time is coming for that person too. 

Probably more than the worthless girl...

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6 hours ago, dubois_15801 said:

She hasn't been sentenced yet.  She just plead guilty.   The absolute minimum she can service is 3 years if all charges are concurrent, because of grading and sentencing guide lines.  Homicide by vehicle has a 3yr min, on up to 10 years.   Then factor in the rest, which the judge could run a mix of concurrent or consecutive. 

Odds are she will get more, but not the maximum because she plead guilty.

I knew a person a couple years ago charged with homicide by vehicle.  She took a plea deal, charges were changed.  She served exactly 1 year in state prison.

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On 4/17/2021 at 6:06 PM, dubois_15801 said:

She hasn't been sentenced yet.  She just plead guilty.   The absolute minimum she can service is 3 years if all charges are concurrent, because of grading and sentencing guide lines.  Homicide by vehicle has a 3yr min, on up to 10 years.   Then factor in the rest, which the judge could run a mix of concurrent or 
Odds are she will get more, but not the maximum because she plead guilty.

even the 10 years is not enough.  DUI should bring more punishment.

I understand there are procedures to this, but I'm just saying they suck and she should be getting a real punishment, not a slap on the wrist.

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59 minutes ago, momtothree said:

even the 10 years is not enough.  DUI should bring more punishment.

I understand there are procedures to this, but I'm just saying they suck and she should be getting a real punishment, not a slap on the wrist.

Especially since she was driving on the interstate, IN THE WRONG DIRECTION.

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55 minutes ago, pennstater said:

And killed someone.  That’s the key. She’s a murderer.  The death penalty should apply. 

Murder requires intent or depraved indifference.   Manslaughter is causing a death by negligence, whether voluntarily or involuntarily.

It wasn't murder.  I'm not sticking up for her, I am pointing out that murder is a specific crime.  To merely cause the death of someone isn't murder.  To INTENTIONALLY kill someone, or to intentionally allow their death to happen, is murder.

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9 hours ago, dubois_15801 said:

Murder requires intent or depraved indifference.   Manslaughter is causing a death by negligence, whether voluntarily or involuntarily.

It wasn't murder.  I'm not sticking up for her, I am pointing out that murder is a specific crime.  To merely cause the death of someone isn't murder.  To INTENTIONALLY kill someone, or to intentionally allow their death to happen, is murder.

Yeah. I know. I just think it should apply.  Afterall she intentionally took drugs and intentionally got in her car and intentionally drove  the wrong way.   We are way to lenient on criminals.  Sad that a young victim is denied the joys of life because of her intentions.  I truly feel for her family.  But I get she won’t serve but a few years.  I’d be amazed if she serves ten years.  

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On 4/19/2021 at 11:08 PM, dubois_15801 said:

Murder requires intent or depraved indifference.   Manslaughter is causing a death by negligence, whether voluntarily or involuntarily.

It wasn't murder.  I'm not sticking up for her, I am pointing out that murder is a specific crime.  To merely cause the death of someone isn't murder.  To INTENTIONALLY kill someone, or to intentionally allow their death to happen, is murder.

DUI should make it automatic murder since she intentionally drove under the influence.   This is what is wrong with our country, no one has to pay for their decisions so they do as they please. 

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7 hours ago, momtothree said:

DUI should make it automatic murder since she intentionally drove under the influence.   This is what is wrong with our country, no one has to pay for their decisions so they do as they please. 

She didn't intentionally kill someone.

How about you hit a kid that runs out into the street and be charged with murder because you were intentionally driving to work.

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A classic example of depraved-heart murder under the common law is in the case Commonwealth v. Malone, a Pennsylvania case in which the court affirmed the second-degree murder conviction of a teenager for a death arising from a game of modified Russian roulette...

My opinion is that the argument could be made that was exactly what she was doing.  Playing Russian roulette on the interstate.  When you are travelling the opposite direction on a one way road at 60-70 mph, there is a decent chance bad things will happen.  

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11 hours ago, dubois_15801 said:

She didn't intentionally kill someone.

How about you hit a kid that runs out into the street and be charged with murder because you were intentionally driving to work.

Ok is the person hitting the kid D.U.I ?? No didnt think so. So ur argument is bullshit. There's definitely a huge difference driving to work on coffee and driving down 80 the wrong way all fucked up on drugs. Your intelligent but that comment was probably the dumbest one I've read from u.. take a nap and try again...

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12 hours ago, dubois_15801 said:

She didn't intentionally kill someone.

How about you hit a kid that runs out into the street and be charged with murder because you were intentionally driving to work.

You are comparing apples to pizza.  She was stoned and went the wrong way. 
If you backed out of your driveway drunk......yes. Murder. 
SHE knowingly got high. And then got in her car AND went the wrong way.   That’s murder.   
She broke the law on all counts. And the key was it was INTENTIONAL.  she intentionally took drugs.  Murder. 

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On 4/21/2021 at 8:22 PM, dubois_15801 said:

She didn't intentionally kill someone.

How about you hit a kid that runs out into the street and be charged with murder because you were intentionally driving to work.

If I'm drunk or high and driving the wrong way, then yes, murder should apply.  Nice try though.  

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