Three flee fatal hit-and-run scene

August 17, 2009 5:02:27 AM PDT
27-year-old Eric Paynter was killed in the crash, 26-year-old Anthony Billela was injured.The crash happened around 12:40 a.m. Saturday in the 600 block of Embreeville Road in West Bradford Township.

Eric C. Paynter, 27, of Glen Mills died in the crash. His passenger, Anthony Billela, 26, of West Chester, was injured. The extent of his injuries are unknown.

Paynter and Billela were travelling in a 2001 Honda Civic, and both were wearing seat belts, police said.

Paynter was driving south on Embreeville Road when he lost control and crossed into an opposing traffic lane. His car was hit on its left side by a northbound 1996 Buick LaSabre.

After the crash, police say Billela called another friend who picked him up.

Together they fled the scene and his friend drove Billela to Brandywine Hospital. Police are not saying yet if alcohol played a role.

The two men in the Buick, who police say were not at fault in the accident, also fled the scene on foot.

Investigators say the two men borrowed the LaSabre and were en route to buy drugs for people at a Coatesville party when the accident happened.

Police say the men are denying they were in the vehicle, but have weak alibis and their injuries are consistent with a car accident.

Authorities tell Action News the suspected driver has a suspended license.

Both vehicles were severely damaged and had to be towed.

State Police will try to use DNA to connect the two men to the accident.

They are facing possible charges of fleeing the scene of an accident and related charges.

Investigators ask anyone with information about the crash to call state police at Embreeville at 484-340-3214.


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