Tonawanda News

Local News

November 16, 2012

Motorcyclist faces more charges in fatal accident case



Those convictions will also be inadmissible in court as a result.

Smith's facial injuries, including bruises under both of his eyes, were visible Thursday. He didn't speak and was subdued, letting Daniels take responsibility for communicating with the judge. 

In line with the seriousness of the charges, Farrell's discourse was firm. He called the incident a "tragic situation" and said he wouldn't entertain requests to release Smith on bail.

"You are probably going to make a request anyway," Farrell told Daniels. "But I am not going to do that."

Daniels said he reserves his right to make a request, but wouldn't confirm that decision yet.

In a matter of procedure, Smith's license was also revoked at Omel's request. 

The accident occurred Sunday at around 3:20 p.m. Smith was driving in Amherst on Tonawanda Creek Road between Campbell Boulevard and Hopkins Road when he veered off the street, hitting three pedestrians and killing two women.

Jocelyn B. Elberson, 25, of Tonawanda, was killed while on a walk with her puppy. Sheila Pelton, 81, of East Amherst was also killed. Both were transported to Millard Fillmore Suburban Hospital, where they were pronounced dead.

Sheila's husband, Foster Pelton, 79, was also hit and was sent to Erie County Medical Center, where he is now listed in serious condition.

Smith will likely have to undergo operations on his face next week, but walked away from the accident with only minor injuries in comparison to those he hit. 

He refused a breath test after the accident, but a court order was obtained for a blood draw.

The victim's families were not in court Thursday. Smith did nod to a middle-aged man in the courtroom, but he declined an interview.

A past co-worker of Smith was also in court for another matter Thursday, quite coincidentally. He wouldn't give his name, but said he used to work with Smith in the maintenance field.

"He was alright," the man said. "He wasn't a jerk."

According to him, Smith loved riding his motorcycle.



Contact reporter Jessica Bagley at 693-1000, ext. 4150.

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