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Salem man sentenced in DUI crash

| Friday, Sept. 6, 2013, 5:42 p.m.

A Salem man was sentenced to three years of probation and one year under house arrest Friday for crashing his vehicle while driving drunk and fleeing the scene, leaving his seriously injured passenger behind.

Thomas Allen Buczak II, 24, was also ordered to pay $2,060 in restitution to victim Michael A. Ross.

Westmoreland County Judge John E. Blahovec said he would reduce the house arrest to six months if Buczak abides by the terms of his probation.

Buczak pleaded guilty in July to two counts of driving under the influence and a charge of aggravated assault by vehicle while driving under the influence.

Police said he crashed into an illuminated sign along Route 819 in Salem Oct. 10. Buczak and another passenger fled, leaving Ross behind.

Buczak later returned and failed field sobriety tests, according to police.

Police said his blood-alcohol content was .157 percent. A motorist is considered intoxicated in Pennsylvania with a blood-alcohol level .08 percent or above.

Ross was extricated and spent more than a month in Allegheny General Hospital, according to court documents. He sustained multiple rib fractures and other internal injuries, including a liver laceration, police said. Court records do not indicate his hometown.

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