Logan officer facing charges
Reidy accused of crashing into car and fleeing the scene of the accident
A Logan Township police officer faces charges after he allegedly slammed his pickup truck into the back of a car and then fled the scene after leaving an Altoona bar.
Brian P. Reidy, 36, 1607 E. Hamilton Lane, an officer with the Logan Township Police Department, was charged Friday with first- and third-degree misdemeanor counts of accidents involving death or personal injury by Altoona police who allege the off-duty Reidy rear-ended a couple in a Toyota Corolla with his Ford F-150 Crew Cab pickup truck, then drove away early on the morning of Jan. 22.
The couple was treated at UPMC Altoona for whiplash as a result of the accident, police said.
Reidy allegedly gave Altoona police investigators a statement Jan. 25 where he admitted to the hit-and-run.
According to the charges, police interviewed Reidy at the Logan Township police department when they showed up Jan. 25 with a search warrant for the vehicle. Police said Reidy told them it was in his garage, and after he was read his Miranda warning, Reidy allegedly told the Altoona detectives he had crashed into the Toyota after leaving a city bar about 1 a.m.
According to charges filed by Altoona police, at 1:10 a.m. an Altoona police officer was dispatched to the 300 block of Valley View Boulevard for a crash. Two Logan Township Police officers who were passing by were at the scene already assisting the couple in the 2000 Toyota Corolla.
Altoona police said the car was hit at a high rate of speed and was pushed off the road by a pickup truck. The car had slowed to turn left off of Valley View Boulevard, near Courtesy Ford, and onto Pleasant Valley Boulevard when the crash occurred, police said.
The couple told police the driver of the truck drove off at a high rate of speed on Valley View Boulevard toward Greenwood after the crash. Pieces of the pickup truck’s front end, including the front license plate assembly and an attached Penn State alumni plate, were found at the scene of the crash, police said.
Reidy told police he was having problems with his girlfriend and had gone to the bar about 11:30 p.m. to have some drinks with friends. Reidy said he had five or six Michelob Light beers and then left the bar about 1 a.m.
Reidy claimed he headed south on 17th Street, then turned onto Valley View Boulevard and was headed toward his Greenwood home and that he wasn’t speeding. He said it wasn’t foggy.
Police said Reidy told detectives he didn’t see the Toyota until right before he hit the back of the car.
“Reidy said that he pulled up along side of the vehicle and stopped and looked and looked to see if the occupants were OK, “ Altoona police noted in the criminal complaint. “He believed they were uninjured and drove away from the scene.”
“Reidy said he drove away because he had been drinking and was scared,” police noted in the charges.
Police pointed out that after Reidy got home, he made no effort to call police about the accident.
Altoona police got information Monday that Reidy was the driver of the truck, and Altoona officers located his truck at the Logan Township Police Department’s parking lot. According to Altoona police, officers had pieces left behind at the crash scene that appeared to match damage to Reidy’s truck.
Surveillance footage obtained by Altoona police from Courtesy Ford allegedly showed the Corolla pulling over just after the crash and a dark blue, F-150 Crew Cab truck speeding away.
Police impounded Reidy’s truck after he gave his statement Jan. 25.
A state police accident reconstructionist, along with an Altoona officer, examined Reidy’s truck and determined the pieces found at the crash scene were from Reidy’s truck, police noted.
Reidy’s attorney, Steven Passarello, said Friday he was aware charges were filed, but he had not had an opportunity to talk to his client about the criminal complaint.
Reidy had been placed on restricted duty status, Logan Township Police Chief Tim Mercer said on Jan. 27. There was no update available Friday as to Reidy’s status, although Mercer said previously that the state’s Confidence in Law Enforcement Act of 2004 would play into Reidy’s status once charged. The act calls for officers charged with a felony or serious misdemeanor to be immediately suspended.
Reidy, who also faces summary charges of careless driving and duty to give information and render aid, is scheduled to appear at Central Court for a preliminary hearing on Feb 22.
Mirror Staff Writer Greg Bock is at 946-7458.