Ex-police chief seeks ARD while charged in DUI crash

Aimee Ambrose
York Dispatch

A former York County police chief wants to go through a diversionary program as a way to clear the DUI and hit-and-run case against him.

Through his attorney, Carl Segatti applied to enter the county’s Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition program on Aug. 22, court documents show. The ARD program is generally available to first-time offenders who meet specific criteria.

The York County District Attorney’s Office was still reviewing the application as of Wednesday, spokesman Kyle King said.

Carl Segatti in a 2010 file photo.

Segatti, 70, of Manchester Township, was driving April 7 when Springettsbury Township police say he rear-ended a car that was stopped in the left turn lane on Route 30 at North Sherman Street.

A group of York Area United Fire/Rescue firefighters were behind Segatti’s vehicle and witnessed the crash, police said.

One firefighter told police he saw Segatti get out of his Jeep and check on the car’s driver. He also spoke to the firefighter and handed him a card with his number on it, the criminal complaint shows.

Segatti, who retired as chief of the Northern York County Regional Police Department in 2010, then allegedly got back into his Jeep to drive away. When the firefighter tried to stop him, telling him he couldn't leave the scene, Segatti allegedly replied: “Watch me.”

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The driver of the other car complained of neck pain and was taken to a local hospital for treatment. Hospital staff told her she had whiplash, according to the criminal complaint. Police found Segatti at his home that evening. There, he allegedly explained his foot had slipped off the Jeep’s clutch, causing the vehicle to lurch forward and strike the other car.

As they spoke, an officer suspected Segatti was drunk and arrested him. In the process, Segatti allegedly wanted the officer to include in his report that he drank vodka while at home to create an “affirmative defense,” according to details in the complaint.

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A blood test after his arrest showed his blood-alcohol content at the time was well above the legal limit of .08% for driving.

Investigators also learned the registration on Segatti’s Jeep had expired and alleged that he switched its license plate with the plate from another car he owns.

Segatti is charged with two misdemeanor counts of driving under the influence as a first offense and a misdemeanor count of causing an injury crash, in addition to summary counts of failing to stop to provide aid, failing to report a crash, driving an unregistered vehicle and fraudulent use of a license plate.

He was arraigned into the York County Court of Common Pleas on July 28 and applied for the ARD program about three-and-a-half-weeks later, court documents show.

Carl Segatti, center, in a 2006 file photo.

With the application still under review six weeks later, King said that timeframe isn’t out of the ordinary for most cases. The length of time can vary based on factors in each case, including whether a victim was involved, such as the crash Segatti was involved in.

The DA’s Office’s webpage on the ARD program cites Pennsylvania state law while noting program applicants can be disqualified if, in the situation for which they’re charged, a crash occurred and a person was seriously injured.

Applications from DUI cases can also fall under “heightened scrutiny” for impairment violations with an accident, among other criteria, the site shows. Entering ARD and completing the program gives applicants an opportunity to avoid convictions and sentences in their cases, and they can potentially have the charges expunged from their record.

Segatti’s attorney, Chris Ferro, didn’t respond to a request for comment Wednesday.

— Reach Aimee Ambrose at aambrose@yorkdispatch.com or on Twitter at @aimee_TYD.