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Mt. Pleasant Township woman admits to causing death of passenger in DUI case

| Saturday, Feb. 9, 2013, 12:01 a.m.

A Mt. Pleasant Township woman Friday admitted to causing the death of her passenger while driving drunk in Hempfield in June 2011.

Lindsay M. Halliday, 32, pleaded guilty to homicide by vehicle while driving under the influence and two additional counts of driving under the influence before Judge Debra Pezze. Halliday is facing a mandatory minimum sentence of three years in prison as part of the plea agreement, according to Assistant District Attorney Allen Powanda.

She will be sentenced at a later date. Halliday's attorney, Patrick Thomassey, said his client does not have a prior record and he hopes that could be helpful at sentencing.

“It's sad, but she's stepping up to the plate,” Thomassey said.

Investigators say Halliday was legally drunk when she overturned her Jeep along Route 819 at Simpson Road at 3:30 a.m. on June 23, 2011. Killed in the crash was her passenger Lauren E. Thompson, 30, of Jeannette.

Halliday's blood-alcohol content was 0.234 percent at the time of the crash, according to court documents. An adult driver with a blood-alcohol content of 0.08 percent is considered to be intoxicated.

Police said Halliday's vehicle veered off the side of the road, hit a fence and spun around, crossing a portion of Simpson Road, then drove across Route 819. The Jeep hit a fire hydrant, rolled over and landed on its roof.

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