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Masontown man to do time in DUI crash that killed sister

| Friday, Jan. 10, 2014, 12:01 a.m.

A Fayette County man charged with homicide by vehicle in the death of his sister will serve up to two years in prison under a plea bargain.

State police filed the charge against James Allen Farrier, 53, of 117 Shortcut Road, Masontown, in the Jan. 13, 2012 death of his sister, Crystal D. Farrier.

She was a rear-seat passenger in a car driven by her brother on Nov. 2, 2011 when it traveled off New Salem Road and hit a mailbox, police said. The eastbound car then re-entered the road, crossed the center line and hit a westbound vehicle. Crystal Farrier, 28, sustained a severe brain injury that left her in a coma, according to police.

She died of complications from the crash, according to the Fayette County Coroner's Office.

James Farrier on Thursday entered guilty pleas to homicide by vehicle, driving under the influence and other charges in exchange for a sentencing recommendation of one to two years in state prison.

The sentence will be followed by a consecutive term of probation, according to Judge Steve Leskinen.

Farrier told Leskinen he blacked out just prior to the crash.

“I don't remember nothing until the wreck was over,” said Farrier. “I don't know what caused my blackout.”

When Leskinen asked Farrier if the presence of marijuana and narcotics in his system might have contributed to the blackout, Farrier said he had not smoked marijuana for two weeks prior to the accident. The narcotics, he said, were prescribed by a physician.

“I could have had a seizure,” Farrier said. “I really don't know.”

Farrier said he had suffered blackouts before the accident, but he did not seek medical care because “it would only hit me once every three months.”

Farrier is to be sentenced 10:30 a.m. Jan. 28 before Leskinen.

Liz Zemba is a reporter for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-601-2166 or lzemba@tribweb.com.

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