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Wayne Independent - Honesdale, PA
  • Charges sent to court in vehicular homicide

  • - The 2004 Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck that hit 19-year-old Zachary Possemato flung him through the air and knocked off his hat and glasses, according to testimony at a preliminary hearing Wednesday.
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  •  - The 2004 Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck that hit 19-year-old Zachary Possemato flung him through the air and knocked off his hat and glasses, according to testimony at a preliminary hearing Wednesday.
    State Police at Honesdale found Possemato dead in a grassy area off Route 191 in Buckingham Township on May 16, near the Hancock Bridge. His glasses and hat were found in the southbound lane.
    The crash happened shortly after 8:30 p.m.
    Charges against the driver, Jason A. Day, 32, of Cadosia, NY, were forwarded to county court after a preliminary hearing before District Judge Ronald Edwards.
    That means Day, who was a cousin to Possemato, will either go to trial or plead guilty.
    Day's lawyer and prosecutors agree that Day was the driver. But disagree over whether it can be proven that he was intoxicated.
    Day is charged with homicide by vehicle while driving under the influence, accident involving death or personal injury, homicide by vehicle, driving under the influence of alcohol or a controlled substance, driving on roadways not laned for traffic, careless driving, duty to give information and render aid and failing to immediately notify an accident to police.
    He is free on $100,000 bail.
    Day had been drinking prior to the crash that killed Possemato, of Hancock, who had been walking on the side of Route 191 at about 8:34 p.m. May 16.
    Day told police the day after the crash that he had consumed four 16-ounce cans of beer between 6 and 8 p.m. on the night of the incident.
    Several witnesses testified that Day had been drinking between 6 and 8 p.m. prior to the crash, but defense lawyer Joseph McGraw brought out that it was possible his client didn't finish the drinks or could have given them to someone else.
    One witness testified that Day could have dumped out some of the beer he had.
    Page 2 of 2 - A video from nearby Smoking Joe's convenience store captured the crash on video, showing the driver of the truck fleeing after the collision.
    Mechanical instruments in the truck show that it had been traveling 48 mph one second before the crash and the brakes were not applied, testified state police Cpl. Michael Joyce, a collision analyst, during direct examination by Wayne County Assistant District Attorney Patrick Robinson.
    McGraw, under cross examination, asked Joyce if the brakes not being applied was an indication that Day did not know he was about to strike someone.
    "I can't say that," Joyce testified, noting that all drivers are different.
    Joyce said Day didn't stop because he had thought he hit a deer.
    Witness John Martin Jr., of Hancock, testified that he had spoken briefly to Day the night of the crash, asking if he knew about the crash.
    "He replied he didn't know and said he had to go," Martin said.
    No field-sobriety or blood tests were performed on Day, but Trooper Keith Brislin testified he believed Day was not capable of driving safely on the night of the crash.
    The trooper based his opinion on Day's statement to police that he had consumed four 16-ounce cans of beer in a two-hour period.
    McGraw asked that the charges of DUI and homicide by vehicle while DUI be dropped because he believed the commonwealth provided insufficient evidence.
    Robinson said the fact that Day fled the scene showed "conscientiousness of guilt."

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