Victim’s boyfriend also arrested after fatality in Ellsworth

Police: Man was in same holding cell as suspect in girlfriend’s death

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The boyfriend of the pedestrian who was struck and killed in a hit-and-run crash Friday night in Ellsworth landed in a holding cell the following morning with the driver who was charged in the fatality.


State police said Brittany Marie Chapman’s boyfriend, identified as Anthony J. Stetz of Van Voorhis, assaulted a state trooper after he was taken into custody for allegedly driving under the influence of alcohol to the scene of the crash that caused her death, court records stated.


Also that morning, police arrested Robert Lee Myers, 42, of Ellsworth, on homicide by motor vehicle and related charges in Chapman’s death. Myers and Stetz were then briefly placed in the same area in Washington County jail while awaiting their arraignments, a court official said, adding neither man knew why the other was being jailed.


Chapman, 29, of Scenery Hill, was killed about 9:30 p.m. Friday, shortly after she left a local tavern and was walking home along the northbound lane of South Main Street, also known as Route 917. Police said her shoes, money and cigarettes were found in the yard of 110 S. Main beside truck parts and other debris from the crash.


Police credited a motorist and Bentleyville police for leading investigators to Myers, who was apprehended at A15 Scott Drive in Ellsworth, where the wrecked pickup truck he allegedly was driving at the time of the crash was parked.


The motorist, Jennifer Mock, jotted down the truck’s license plate number and reported its driver for aggressive and reckless driving to Bentleyville police 10 minutes before Chapman was struck and killed in nearby Ellsworth. Bentleyville police Chief Richard Young passed along the information to state police investigating the fatality, court records indicated.


Bentleyville council reinstated the borough police department July 1, naming Young as chief, about a decade after the department was disbanded over financial problems.


Mayor Tom Brown said the chief’s assistance in the crash investigation was an example of why local elected officials believed it was important to have a local police department.


“I am very happy with him, particularly in a matter like that,” Brown said Monday.


Stetz, 53, was taken from the crash scene to the state police barracks in Washington to be charged with driving under the influence of alcohol. He was being released to his mother about 11:45 p.m. Friday when, court records allege, he pushed and elbowed Trooper Jason C. Stenger while refusing to leave the lobby.


Stetz was arrested on additional charges of aggravated assault, simple assault, harassment, disorderly conduct and public drunkenness. He was released from the county jail Saturday afternoon after posting his $50,000 bond set by District Judge Larry Hopkins.


Myers was jailed without bond after being arraigned Saturday morning before Hopkins. In addition to homicide by motor vehicle, he was charged with aggravated assault, driving under the influence of alcohol, reckless endangerment, failure to stop and render aid, failure to notify police of an accident and numerous traffic and motor vehicle violations. He was scheduled to appear for a preliminary hearing at 9:30 a.m. Aug. 27 in Central Court.


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