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Man pleads guilty in fatal bike accident

October 01, 1998|By DAVE MCMILLION, Charles Town

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. - A Shepherdstown, W.Va., man on Thursday pleaded guilty to three charges stemming from a traffic accident that claimed the life of a teenager last year, according to Jefferson County Magistrate Court records.

Barry C. Harper, 42, pleaded guilty to leaving the scene causing death, failure to report an accident and failure to render aid, according to court records.

Harper had faced a maximum sentence of up to one year and 20 days in jail on the charges. Magistrate Gail Boober instead ordered him to complete 250 hours of community service and obtain counseling, according to court records.

Harper also was ordered to pay $901 in fines and court costs, according to records.

Christopher R. May, 16, was struck by a pickup truck while he was riding his bike on W.Va. 45 just outside Shepherdstown on Sept. 24, 1997, according to court records.

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May was taken to Fairfax (Va.) Hospital, where he was later pronounced dead, said West Virginia State Police Trooper David Peal.

After the accident, Peal was told that a dark-colored truck fled the scene, traveling west on Billmyer Road, according to court records.

Written statements were taken from three people at the scene, who said the driver of the truck did not stop after the accident, did not attempt to assist May and did not attempt to call police, according to court records.

The driver of the truck later called police, according to court records. Peal said he met with Harper, who gave him a signed confession of his involvement in the accident, court records said.

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