Waldorf Man Pleads Guilty in Fatal Crash
Sunday, January 28, 2007
Albert Reigle Jr., the Waldorf man accused of causing a fiery highway crash that killed two Calvert County women last April, pleaded guilty Friday to two counts of vehicular manslaughter.
Reigle faces up to 10 years in prison on each count. Sentencing is scheduled for March 30 in Calvert Circuit Court.
In a statement released Friday, the Calvert State's Attorney's Office said there had been no plea agreement in the case and that prosecutors will seek the maximum penalty against Reigle.
The deadly crash, which involved five vehicles, occurred just before 8 a.m. April 17, 2006, on Route 2/4 south of Prince Frederick.
A chain reaction began when a green Thunderbird driven by Reigle ran into the rear of a van operated by AAA Transport. The van was carrying a 51-year-old woman home from a doctor's appointment, police said.
After being hit by Reigle's car, the southbound van spun across the median into the northbound lanes, where it collided with a pickup truck and caught fire. A Ford Escape, traveling north, also hit the van, and a truck heading south collided with the Thunderbird.
The crash killed van passenger Theresa Gant of White Sands and the driver, Natala R. Lowery, 25, of North Beach, police said.
The collision, which occurred just north of Sixes Road, also injured Reigle and the driver of the pickup.
Minutes before the fatal accident, authorities said, Reigle had been involved in two minor collisions on Route 2/4 as he traveled south. The first occurred at Route 231 about 7:44 a.m., when Reigle sideswiped another vehicle, authorities said at the time. The second collision occurred moments later, farther south on Route 2/4, and it was followed by the fatal accident about 7:46 a.m.
When police made contact with Reigle after the final crash, they noted a strong odor of the drug phencyclidine, commonly known as PCP, coming from him, authorities said. Police also found marijuana in one of Reigle's pockets, according to court documents.