Man killed in Butler crash told cops: 'You'll read about me in paper tomorrow'
A Butler woman was driving home to her husband and three children late on Wednesday when her life ended in a violent collision that police said may have been an intentional act by another driver who warned them he would soon be dead.
Employees at the UPS distribution center in Jackson, where Hannah D. Swigart, 36, was a supervisor, mourned her loss on Thursday, describing her as a gentle soul.
“Everybody's pretty upset about it,” employee Matt Schnur said. “She was one of the best people I've ever met in my life.”
State police Lt. Eric Hermick said investigators are trying to determine whether Michael H. Reid, 38, intentionally veered his Dodge Neon into the path of Swigart's Jeep Cherokee about 11:20 p.m. on Route 68 in Forward, killing both of them.
“It angers you because he changed so many lives,” Hermick said.
Swigart's family, including her husband, Joel, and UPS management declined to comment.
Butler Township police Chief John R. Hays said that a woman, identified in court records as Carrie Black, called police just after 11 p.m. Wednesday, reporting that her ex-boyfriend was at her Butler residence and damaged the house and a vehicle by throwing bricks at them. Black said she had a protection-from-abuse order against him.
Hays said Reid had left by the time police arrived. When Reid called Black, Officer Alan Mores took the phone and tried to talk to him, the chief said, but Reid refused, ending the call with a chilling warning.
“He said he'd be dead by morning,” Hermick said. Hays added that Reid also said, “You'll read about me in the newspaper tomorrow.”
Hermick said Reid smelled of alcohol after the crash, and there was no indication that he tried to avoid the collision. Two motorists saw Reid speeding just before the crash, Hermick said.
According to court records and police, Reid had a history of mental problems, including several suicide attempts.
Two other women, including an ex-wife, had filed restraining orders against him, and all three against him were active. He had two drunken driving convictions dating to 1997 and 1999, according to court records.
Police said there's no indication that Swigart and Reid knew each other.
Swigart's Facebook page said she worked for UPS since 1999.
Swigart slept just a few hours a night, caring for her children, ages 1, 8 and 12, and working to support her family, her friend Beth Yost said.
“Hannah was an amazing mother, wife and friend,” Yost told WPXI-TV, the Tribune-Review's news partner. “She believed in God, and I know that's where she is at and she didn't deserve this.”
Schnur said that on many Fridays, Swigart brought food to work and helped load packages into trucks when needed.
“She would talk to you about anything,” Schnur said.
Yost's neighbors, Mike and Shannon Shook of Butler Township, said they met Swigart through Yost. Shannon Shook described Swigart as “bubbly, friendly,” while Mike Shook said she was “almost ‘hippyish,' very kind, always willing to lend a hand.”
On her Facebook page, Swigart posted on June 12 how she collected baby toads from a pond near the UPS center for her children.“We all looked pretty silly — but it was the most fun I've had at work in ages!” Swigart wrote.
Bill Vidonic is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-380-5621 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.
- With usage shrinking, Butler County senior centers ponder changes
- Hotel anchors Village of Cranberry Woods development plan
- Former agency supervisor claims Butler County fired her because of her age
- Mars board hopes to hire superintendent by May
- City of Butler to lift summer concert alcohol ban
- Special Butler school board meeting on consolidation requested
- VA complex construction in Butler hits another snag
- Controller withholds housing agency check
- Freedom Road residents let zoning appeal deadline pass