2009-05-28 / Local & State

Smith Sentenced In Fatal Crash

By Chanin Rotz-Mountz STAFF WRITER

A 17-year-old with ties to both the Hustontown and Chambersburg areas was sentenced Tuesday morning in connection with a fatal crash that claimed the life of a 14-year-old boy, as well as several more recent episodes involving criminal attempt burglary and a break-in at an area business.

Robert "Bobby" Charles Smith appeared before Court of Common Pleas Judge Douglas W. Herman on May 26 for sentencing on a variety of charges, including homicide by vehicle, driving under the influence, burglary and criminal attempt burglary. Smith, who was certified in early March as an adult, was represented in court by defense attorney Eric Weisbrod.

Fulton County District Attorney Travis Kendall reported to the "News" following sentencing proceedings that Smith will serve an aggregate sentence of three to 10 years in a state correctional institution in connection with the guilty pleas. The first portion of Smith's sentence will occur at a special youth facility at SCI Pine Grove, Kendall stated.

The homicide by vehicle and driving-under-the-influence charges stem from the August 3, 2008, collision that claimed 14- year-old Joshua Timothy Wilt Jr. of Hustontown. Wilt's death was linked to blunt force trauma to the chest and abdomen area. Neither Wilt nor Smith, the driver of the vehicle, were wearing seat belts when their 1992 Isuzu Amigo struck an embankment shortly after midnight on North Hess Road. Both young men were ejected from the vehicle.

Following his certification as an adult in early March, Smith was linked to a an attempted break-in at a residence, as well as a burglary at the Burnt Cabins Grist Mill that occurred between 7:50 p.m. on March 18 and 8 a.m. on March 19. During the breakin, cigarettes, a donation bucket, various change, a laptop, camera printer and a knife were stolen.

Following his connection to the incidents, Smith was remanded to the Franklin County Jail, where he remained until sentencing this week.

Breaking down the charges of the joint trial, Smith will complete 16 to 60 months in a state correctional institution for homicide by vehicle and a concurrent sentence of two days to six months for driving under the influence. On one count of criminal attempt burglary, Judge Herman ordered an additional 12- to 36- month jail term, which will be followed by an eight- to 24- month sentence for burglary. Furthermore, restitution to be paid by Smith has been estimated at $30,000.

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