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The original item was published from 12/28/2016 9:32:35 AM to 3/11/2017 5:00:08 PM.

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District Attorney

Posted on: December 28, 2016

[ARCHIVED] No Sentence Relief for Convicted DUI Driver who Fled Fatal Crash in Mount Joy

Leston Daugherty III

A state-prison inmate will not be re-sentenced for causing a fatal hit-and-run crash four years ago in Mount Joy, despite his request that the original sentence was illegal.

Leston E. Daugherty III, 47, is serving an 8-to-25-year sentence for making an illegal pass into oncoming traffic Nov. 3, 2012, on Route 230.

Daugherty’s pickup truck struck a vehicle occupied by a Lititz couple. The woman, 72-year-old Ruth Bires, was killed, and her husband was seriously hurt.

Daugherty’s blood-alcohol level was more than three times the state’s legal limit. He fled the scene of the crash.

He requested appeal relief, claiming some of the charges he was convicted of, and sentenced for, should have merged – meaning not have been sentenced separately.

The Pennsylvania Superior Court recently denied the request, finding the disputed charges should not have merged.

Per state law, only charges with identical elements, from a single criminal act, merge for sentencing, according to the court’s 7-page opinion.  

Daugherty, formerly of Elizabethtown, pleaded guilty in 2013 to vehicular homicide while DUI, vehicular aggravated assault by DUI, and numerous other offenses.

His blood-alcohol level shortly after the crash was .265 percent. The state’s legal limit for drivers is .08 percent.

Lancaster County Judge Joseph Madenspacher ordered the sentence and denied Daugherty’s initial appeal, filed in Lancaster County Court.

Mount Joy police filed charges.

MEDIA CONTACT: Brett A. Hambright, 717-295-2041;; Twitter: @BrettHambright

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