Criminal Records Show Driver Has Prior DUI ChargeBy Paul Martino

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WASHINGTON (KDKA) — Police continue to search for answers into how and why a driver plowed into a Washington medical center Wednesday, instantly killing a receptionist.

The investigation is centered on 43-year-old Chad Spence, of Weirton, W.Va., who was driving the red Jeep Liberty that went wildly out of control into the Washington Health Clinic Outpatient Center.

Fifty-seven-year-old Kimberly Dollard was sitting at her desk when the Jeep slammed into her and killed her. She and her family were getting ready to leave soon for her son’s wedding in Mexico.

“Yesterday he didn’t really have any recollection of the events, so obviously he was being treated medically, so we left him to have that taken care of,” Washington Police Lt. Dan Stanek said.

Flowers were placed at the scene of the crash Thursday and the damage was being assessed by company officials.

Police are looking at three possibilities for the cause of the crash: a mechanical failure, a medical problem that caused the driver to lose control or was the driver under the influence?

They have taken a blood sample from Spence.

“That takes the longest time because we have to send the blood off to a laboratory and that takes a little bit of time to complete the testing,” Stanek said.

Blood tests are standard in a fatal crash, but in this instance, the driver has a bad history.

Spence’s criminal record includes many violations, including driving under the influence, drug and weapons charges and endangering the welfare of children.

Even so, police are keeping an open mind.

“Past events don’t really mean that he did something wrong in this instance,” Stanek said.

Spence has been released from the hospital and police are preparing to interview him. They’ve also obtained a search warrant for his Jeep.

Police are also reviewing surveillance video, which shows some, but not all, of the crash.