Alisha Kuttler, the first witness said that she was on I-95, going about 70 mph, when a motorcycle appeared in the rearview mirror and was relieved that she wasn’t going to get a speeding ticket. She never saw the oncoming headlights or the vehicle driving the wrong way on the highway. She only saw the motorcycle coming down, followed by the officer’s body, and then his helmet.
The officer was Brian Lorenzo, 48, a motorcycle drill team training instructor with 23 years experience in law enforcement, a wife, three children, and a brother in Philadelphia’s 25th Police District.
The officer’s wife filed a lawsuit against the driver, John Leck Jr., who had allegedly been drinking at a T.G.I. Friday’s in Bensalem. Driving DUI, he steered his Audi A6 onto the Cottman Avenue offramp and fatally struck Lorenzo.
Leck, 48 of Levittown, is charged with third-degree murder, homicide by vehicle, driving under the influence, aggravated assault and involuntary manslaughter. His attorney, Michael Parlow said that they are not disputing what happened that night they will fight the third-degree murder and aggravated assault charges. There was no malice in his heart or in his head and if you’re that intoxicated, you’re not going to notice that words are backward on the street.
State Trooper Charles Burckhardt showed photographs, videos and diagrams reconstructing every detail of the crash. A few minutes into his presentation, Lorenzo’s wife left the courtroom in tears.
There was no evidence that Leck braked, swerved or tried to stop, Burckhardt said. Lorenzo was thrown over the car, his right leg severed and his abdomen torn when he landed more than 20 feet away. Assistant District Attorney Jacqueline Juliano Coelho said the evidence shows “sustained recklessness” justifying third-degree murder, which carries a 20- to 40-year sentence.
Judge Teresa Carr Deni scheduled an arraignment for Oct. 17 at 11 a.m.
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