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Charles Town man charged in crash that killed teen

Merle Stanley Johnson was charged with felony DUI resulting in death

April 04, 2012

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. — A preliminary hearing is scheduled for April 19 for a man charged in a Jan. 22 head-on collision that claimed the life of a local teenager delivering pizzas, according to Jefferson County Magistrate Court records.

Merle Stanley Johnson, 64, of 1125 Tuscawilla Hills in Charles Town was charged with felony DUI resulting in death following the crash. He was free Wednesday on $10,000 bond.

The victim, James L. Fletcher II, 17, was pronounced dead at Jefferson Memorial Hospital an hour after the accident, police said.

Fletcher was a student at Washington High School in Charles Town. He was working for Brothers Pizza 2 at the time of the crash, the restaurant owner said.

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Johnson was treated at Winchester (Va.) Medical Center.

His blood-alcohol level was 0.240, according to police, which is three times the legal limit of in W.Va. is 0.08.

He faces two to 10 years in prison if convicted. He also was charged with failure to maintain control, court records said.

Johnson was westbound when his Oldsmobile sedan crossed the median strip, ran onto some grass, returned to the roadway and struck Fletcher’s oncoming Ford Escort, according to police.

Road conditions were dry at the time of the 7:16 p.m. crash, police said.

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