North Strabane police charge Mt. Lebanon woman in hit-and-run crash

October 6, 2017

A Mt. Lebanon woman was charged earlier this week in connection with a hit-and-run crash last month in which she allegedly hit the same vehicle twice while driving with a blood-alcohol content four times the legal limit.

Patricia Maureen Abbott, 58, was charged by North Strabane Township police with leaving the scene of an accident, driving under the influence of alcohol, failure to render aid, careless driving, having an open container of alcoholic beverage and failure to stay in her lane in connection with the Sept. 19 crash at Morganza Road and Southpointe Boulevard.

Police were called just after 1 p.m. for a report of a two-vehicle crash in which one vehicle had left the scene. A witness was following that vehicle into Southpointe, so Cecil Township police also responded.

The Washington couple who were in the vehicle that was hit told police they were stopped at a red light on Southpointe when the other vehicle, which had been going south on Morganza, made a wide right turn onto Southpointe and hit their vehicle. The driver, later identified by police as Abbott, backed up and tried to drive away but again hit the Washington couple’s vehicle. Abbott allegedly told the driver “Sorry” before driving off.

Police said Abbott was found in her vehicle in a lot on Ansys Drive.

Police said she failed field-sobriety tests and was taken to the station for a blood-alcohol test. During a search of her purse, police said they found a small empty bottle of wine and a half-empty bottle of wine. Under the seat of her car were two more bottles of wine she purchased about 35 minutes before the crash at a state liquor store, police said. The charges were sent by summons from the office of District Judge Jay Weller. Abbott is scheduled for a Nov. 3 preliminary hearing before Weller.

Kathie O. Warco has covered the police beat and transportation for the Observer-Reporter for more than 25 years. She graduated from Duquesne University with a degree in journalism.

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