Legally blind Leechburg man charged in fatal traffic accident
Police are accusing a Leechburg man of driving a borrowed truck that hit and killed a woman in the borough in October even though they say he knew he is legally blind.
Michael P. Shaley, 58, of Morgan Drive was charged by Leechburg police Wednesday with the death of Linda A. Lucchino, 64.
Lucchino, a retired Apollo-Ridge School District librarian, was critically injured along the 400 block of Third Street while she was walking to a beauty shop on Oct. 6.
She had surgery, was put on life support, and was in a nursing home when she died Dec. 11.Shaley is charged with vehicular homicide, involuntary manslaughter, careless driving, and related offenses.
In an affidavit, police allege that Shaley knew he has bad eyesight and is legally blind but still drove his daughter's truck and struck Lucchino.
Police allege Shaley's eyesight is well below the state standard to drive. Police say medical records also show that a physician told him not to drive.
According to police, Shaley reported that he thought he hit something, but wasn't sure. So he got out of the truck and walked back to find a stricken Lucchino in the middle of the road.
He also allegedly told an officer that he didn't know where the woman was before striking her “due to the fact he is legally blind.”
The affidavit says Shaley described for police the limitations of his eyesight, saying, “I can see the badge on your shirt.” The officer was 2 to 3 feet away.When asked by an officer if he could read letters on the side of a Lower Kiski Ambulance about 10 feet away, Shaley allegedly said, “No, I cannot see that far.” The officer said the letters are 6 to 8 inches tall.
Shaley was formally charged Wednesday afternoon by Leechburg District Judge James Andring after walking to the office.
Police say Shaley has no criminal record.
Andring released Shaley in lieu of $100,000 non-monetary bond pending a preliminary hearing April 10.
Chuck Biedka is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-226-4711 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Alle-Kiski farmers: Crops weather heavy rain
- Springdale counters despair with ‘HOPE’
- Cost of Glade Run Lake dam to beat estimates
- Keystone Markers give insights about towns but have fallen victim to time, theft or traffic accidents
- Union to work while ATI talks continue
- Leechburg residents begin holiday lights campaign
- Saxonburg residents surprised by zoning proposal
- ‘Wax weed’ worries authorities
- Springdale Jubilee opens Tuesday; hours extended Thursday through Saturday
- New Kensington residents rally in support of 82-year-old robbery victim
- Pyrotechnics display turns from benefit to burden in Tarentum