.44 BAC?? True!

The fountain accident was NOT a conspiracy – it just needed TIME to make the charges stick

Update – 29 December – On 12/02/21 the Chambersburg Police Department was dispatched to the square for a vehicle that struck the fountain. During the course of the investigation it was determined that the operator of the vehicle was under the influence of alcohol. Gary W Hummel II was charged with DUI-Highest Rate, DUI-General Impairment and Driving on roadways laned for traffic.

December 20 – Sometimes when the public hears only “ongoing investigation” as a reason information can’t be released, frustrations build.

It’s understandable.

But something else that needs to be understood is the criminal justice system in this country. Paperwork and proper records need to be completed accurately and can’t be rushed. Rushing can result in guilty suspects getting off on minor technicalities.

Sometimes the ongoing investigation is more important than the public’s need to know.

The best recent example of this is the fountain accident in downtown Chambersburg on December 2 when a Ford Expedition barreled through the square around 3 a.m. and slammed into memorial fountain.   

The SUV had allegedly been involved in a hit and run near Days Inn on Lincoln Way East in Chambersburg.

Gary Hummel, of Pottsville, Pa., will be charged through a summons with DUI Highest Rate and other traffic offenses. His blood alcohol content was .44, nearly five times the legal limit, according to Lieutenant Jon Greenawalt from the Chambersburg Police Department.

Chambersburg Police Chief Ron Camacho had a lot of calls about the fountain.

A rumor of a conspiracy for why Chambersburg Police didn’t release the name has been floating around town.

Camacho said, “I’ll tell you why we didn’t release the name. Ongoing investigation. This guy was taken to Maryland so we had to go to Maryland to go get the information for him to be able to make the DUI arrest. To me, it’s more important to make that arrest and make that arrest stick then rush and throw out this guy’s name because people want to know who’s responsible. There was no conspiracy. We’re not hiding anything. This guy’s not even from town. It had to do with us doing the things right. Doing them via our policies and procedures and what is going to affect a good arrest and a good prosecution here in the future. That’s why we did the things we did.”

The fountain will need to be removed for repairs, according to Chambersburg Borough Councilmember Allen Coffman.

ART Research Enterprises in Lancaster, Pa., came to town to take a look at the fountain. This is the same company that rehabbed the fountain about six years ago.

The group wants to have the entire fountain back in Lancaster to inspect everything, including pieces that were broken and the alignment of the structure itself.

While costs haven’t been decided yet, Coffman suggested the borough will likely be looking at six figures to fixing the fountain.

Chief Camacho indicated that Hummel will likely be looking at contributing to those costs.