A West Chester man was charged Tuesday with homicide by vehicle and driving under the influence in a crash that killed a motorcyclist last month.
Robert Landis was driving with a suspended license and a blood alcohol level of more than three times the legal limit when he crashed his pickup truck into a motorcycle on Wilmington Pike in Westtown Twp., Chester Co., on Apr. 26, said District Attorney Tom Hogan.
The motorcyclist, Liam Crowley, later died of his injuries, officials said.
"Liam Crowley would be alive today if Robert Landis had not blatantly disobeyed our laws," said Chief Brenda Bernot, Westtown-East Goshen Regional Police Dept. "But Robert Landis has demonstrated that he does not care about others and his incredibly selfish acts on Apr. 26 took the life of a young man with so much potential and destroyed the lives of those who loved him."
Landis, 49, claimed he had only "a couple of beers," however, officers on the scene of the crash observed that he had bloodshot eyes, slurred speech and a strong odor of alcohol, said police, adding subsequent testing revealed his blood alcohol level to be 0.28 percent.
"Getting behind the wheel of a pickup truck at night on the highway with this much alcohol in your system is like firing a 5,000 pound bullet into a crowd of people," said Hogan.
Officers also found a number of empty and full beer cans in Landis's truck, police said.
Landis was charged with homicide by vehicle while driving under the influence, aggravated assault by motor vehicle, driving under the influence and related offenses.
"Another young person has been senselessly killed by a drunk driver," said Hogan. "We cannot bring Liam Crowley back to his family and friends, but we will pursue justice against the man who killed Liam."
Authorities asked anyone with information about the deadly crash to call Westtown-East Goshen Detective Jon Stafford at 610-692-5100.