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Driver in fatal hit and run charged

By Staff | Feb 21, 2018

Nearly a year after 29-year-old Cheney Ray Orwig was struck and killed by a hit-run driver while crossing Lycoming Mall Drive, just east of Montoursville, state police filed charges against the motorist.

Gary Wayne Worth, 70, of Green Street, Muncy, who surrendered to authorities about two hours after the crash, was charged last week with accidents involving death or personal injury (hit-run), a felony, as well as careless driving and failure to render aid, both summary offenses.

Orwig was among a group of passengers who had stepped off a River Valley Transit bus at Lycoming Mall Drive and Fairfield Road about 6:30 a.m. on Feb. 16, 2017, moments before the crash, police said.

The riders getting off, including Orwig, were all going to work at various businesses in the immediate area, police said.

After getting off the bus, Orwig and another man walked from behind the bus into the road, attempting to cross from the south to the north side of Lycoming Mall Drive, police said. While one man made it across, Orwig was hit by a westbound 1998 Dodge pickup truck, allegedly driven by Worth, police said.

Worth continued “traveling west without stopping,” Trooper Ronald Barrett wrote in an affidavit. Orwig, of Williamsport, was rushed to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead of injuries at 7:20 a.m.

Worth fled the scene not once, but twice before he returned about 8:20 a.m., police said. When he approached the scene, he was stopped by a traffic detail that was detouring motorists around the crash, which shut down Lycoming Mall Drive for four hours.

He surrendered to police, who took him to the barracks on Cherry Street in Montoursville for questioning.

Worth said he saw the stopped bus on the eastbound berm, Barrett said. “He related he hit something in the westbound lane that made a loud ‘pow’ sound,” the trooper said, adding that Worth told investigators he drove to Fairview Road, where he stopped and examined the damage to his truck.

Worth turned around, went back to the crash and saw the injured pedestrian on a grassy mound. “He saw emergency vehicles approaching and left because he did not want to get in the way,” Barrett said investigators were told.

Based on evidence collected at the scene, including a video taken from a camera outside a business, an accident reconstructionist estimated Worth was traveling 46 to 48 mph.

Following his arraignment before District Judge Gary A. Whiteman, Worth was released on $15,000 bail.