Probation for woman who struck, killed Fairview Twp. pedestrian
A former Fairview Township woman has avoided prison for hitting and killing a neighbor who was walking on the shoulder of a township road nearly a year ago.
Trisha M. Seilhamer, 31, pleaded guilty Tuesday in York County Court to the misdemeanors of reckless endangerment and careless driving causing an unintentional death, according to court records.
She was sentenced to two years of probation, court records state. Seilhamer used to live in the 500 block of Nauvoo Road but now lives in Mount Holly Springs, Cumberland County, records state.
As part of a negotiated plea agreement, charges of vehicular homicide and involuntary manslaughter were dropped.
What happened: Fairview Township Police said Seilhamer was driving her Chevrolet Cruze south in the 900 block of Lewisberry Road about 7 a.m. Feb. 20, 2016, when she struck Nita Stout.
Stout, 45, of the 400 block of Nauvoo Road, was walking north on the southbound shoulder, according to police. State law requires pedestrians to face oncoming traffic when walking along a roadway where there is no sidewalk.
Police said Seilhamer should have seen Stout on the shoulder of the road.
"Seilhamer ... allowed her vehicle to travel completely onto the paved shoulder of the southbound lane while traveling south on Lewisberry Road and negotiating a left-hand curve in the roadway," court documents state.
135 feet: Seilhamer's car drove 135 feet on the shoulder, according to police.
Stout tried to move out of the way, but she couldn't avoid hitting the driver-side hood and windshield of Seilhamer's car, police have said.
"No evidence of evasive actions, including braking and or steering to avoid striking the victim, were found at the scene," court documents state.
Seilhamer told police she was coming home from work and was approaching Nauvoo Road when a figure appeared directly in front of her vehicle, documents state. She said she was not able to react or avoid hitting the person, police have said.
Fairview Township Police filed charges against Seilhamer in October.
'Compassion and grace': Defense attorney Brian Perry called the case a tragedy on all fronts, and said he was moved by Stout's family.
"I have never witnessed compassion and grace from a victim's family like I did (Tuesday) morning," he said. "To watch a victim's husband literally hug my client walking out of the courtroom is something I will never forget."
— Reach Liz Evans Scolforo at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter at @LizScolforoYD.