Cops: Pa. salesman had rum before fatal test drive

AP News
Posted: Mar 04, 2011 7:05 PM
Cops: Pa. salesman had rum before fatal test drive

A used-car salesman who had alcohol and pot in system took a man and his son on a test drive at about double the speed limit, swerving around a truck and flipping the car, killing one of the passengers, police said.

Michael D. Hershey of Landisville was charged Thursday with vehicular homicide, driving under the influence of a controlled substance, reckless endangerment and driving at an unsafe speed. Jon Christian "Chris" Jensen of Leola was killed and his 20-year-old son, Tyler, was injured in the Dec. 30 crash.

A witness estimated that the vehicle had been going about 85 mph in a 35 mph zone when the driver lost control, a police affidavit said. Hershey told police he was going about 60 mph.

Hershey told police he drank rum before the crash, the affidavit said. Blood tests taken hours afterward showed Hershey with a blood alcohol level of .06 percent and the presence of marijuana in his system, the affidavit said.

Tyler Jensen, a Colorado college student, administered CPR to his father before an ambulance arrived, the Philadelphia Daily News reported.

"Half of his teeth were floating around (in his mouth). I was reaching in and trying, but I never could clear the airways," Tyler Jensen told the paper. The 48-year-old Chris Jensen, who the Lancaster New Era and Intelligencer Journal said was the administrator of health services at York County Prison, died at the scene.

The police affidavit said Tyler Jensen estimated that Hershey was driving the 2006 Mitsubishi Lancer as fast as 100 mph before the crash.

The 48-year-old Hershey worked for Imports of Lancaster County, the Daily News reported.

Jim Thomas, an attorney for the car dealership, called the crash a "very, very tragic accident." He said the dealership would cooperate with police on an investigation.

Lancaster County court officials were unsure if Hershey had obtained a lawyer. A message left at home phone listing in his name Friday wasn't immediately returned.