A Dover Township student has pleaded guilty to causing a crash that killed a motorcyclist last fall, and also pleaded guilty to tampering with evidence and running a stop sign.
Brandon Ray Gillman, 19, of 3611 Emig School Road, remains free pending his sentencing hearing, set for July 30.
Gillman caused a Sept. 21 crash near the corner of Intermediate Avenue and Frederick Court in Dover Township that killed motorcyclist Steven E. Arnold, 50, of Warrington Township.
When the crash happened, Gillman was on his way to a football game at Dover Area High School about 4:40 p.m., according to Northern York County Regional Police.
Witnesses told officers Gillman was driving a Ford F-350 pickup truck on Intermediate Avenue and turned right onto Frederick Court, then made a very wide U-turn back onto Intermediate Avenue and toward the high school without stopping for the posted stop sign, court documents state.
'Don't do this': He told a schoolmate riding in the truck, "Don't do this, this is illegal" before making the U-turn, documents allege.
Arnold sounded his horn, but Gillman kept going through the stop sign and collided with Arnold, police said.
After the crash Gillman told his passenger, "You can leave," documents state. The girl was 15 at the time, had never been involved in an accident before, panicked and left, police said.
Gillman, who is a high-school senior, gave three false statements to investigators, with details changing in each version, documents allege. In those statements, Gillman maintained he was alone in the truck at the time of the crash, police said.
Two days after the crash, Gillman sent a text message to the girl who'd been his passenger, instructing her not to say anything about the crash to anyone, and also wrote, "no one saw you, and I'm probably looking at jail time," documents allege.
Went to police: Sometime after that, the girl and her mother went to police and turned over her cellphone, according to police, who said they were able to recover Gillman's texts.
Gillman's cellphone was seized, but a forensic examination determined someone had erased all the messages in it, documents state. Police said that's the basis for the evidence-tampering charge.
Senior deputy prosecutor Jared Mellott said Gillman made an open plea, meaning it will be up to a judge to determine an appropriate sentence.
Prison time: A minimum sentence in the standard sentencing range would be somewhere between three and 12 months in prison, the prosecutor said.
Mellott said he will review a pre-sentence investigation before determining how much prison time he'll ask for.
Despite Gillman's young age and lack of prior criminal record, Mellott said he'll likely seek a sentence closer to the top of the standard range because Gillman tried to conceal the involvement of a witness, has shown a lack of remorse and has not accepted responsibility for his actions.
Defense attorney T.L. Kearney declined comment.
-- Staff writer Liz Evans Scolforo can also be reached at email@example.com.