ROSS TOWNSHIP (KDKA) — A local man facing charges in a deadly accident that claimed the life of his 21-year-old girlfriend back in February appeared in court today for a preliminary hearing.
Brett Saltrick, 21, walked out of that hearing this morning headed for trial on charges of driving under the influence on the night of Feb. 6.
Police say that’s when he crashed his car; killed in the accident was his passenger, Bryanna Reidel, of Wheeling W. Va.
“He has a 1,000 yard stare. He’s just, is barely able to understand what’s going on about him because of the guilt he has,” said Robert Stewart, Saltrick’s attorney.
It was the night of the Super Bowl when Ross Township police say Saltrick lost control his vehicle on Thompson Run Road.
Police say Saltrick’s Subaru went into the path of another vehicle.
“It’s going to be our contention that speed was a factor and there’s no evidence that the consumption of alcohol was a factor; but regardless, no matter what happens, this boy is going to be convicted of something,” said Stewart.
“The homicide by vehicle minimum is three years,” said Det. Brian Kohlhepp, of the Ross Township Police Department.
That is the least that Saltrick could face behind bars if convicted, but that does not take into account the human suffering as a result of what happened.
“Two families have been destroyed is what has happened here,” Stewart added.
“There is certainly a teaching point from this to people, especially young people, about driving fast, especially on winding roads, and about driving under the influence of alcohol,” said Det. Kohlhepp.
Saltrick remains free on bond. His formal arraignment is set for late July.
Reidel’s family was not in attendance at today’s hearing.