4th person dies after Jan. crash in Calvert County

February 21, 1999|By Lisa Respers | Lisa Respers,SUN STAFF

A fourth person died yesterday as a result of a crash that rocked the tight-knit community of Lusby in Calvert County.

Donald Lee Roberts, 35, of Lusby died yesterday at about 12: 45 p.m., state police said.

Roberts was driving a U-Haul truck Jan. 27 when it was hit head-on by a Ford Mustang driven by Michael Keith Vito, 17, who also died in the accident along with his girlfriend, Rachel Thomas, 15, and his stepsister, Jacqueline Suzanne Rose, 14.

The accident shocked Lusby's waterfront neighborhood of Drum Point, where Roberts had lived before beginning a move to North Carolina.

"Donnie had just packed his second load to move when it happened," said neighbor Dan Flora, who had known Roberts for five years. "Everyone knows everyone around here."

A teen-age boy, whom investigators did not name because he is a juvenile, was charged Friday with triggering the car crash. Investigators said the teen-ager and Vito were engaged in a speed contest with illegal passing on Route 760, a two-lane road.

Sgt. Raymond Sanders of the Maryland State Police said the Calvert County state's attorney's office had been contacted about adding charges against the teen-ager as a result of Roberts' death.

Flora said Roberts, who had a painting business, was a computer buff who often answered technical questions for friends. Roberts was planning to reunite with a former girlfriend and was excited about the move, Flora said.

"It was a new life for him," Flora said.

The teen-ager charged with causing the collision was being held yesterday on charges of manslaughter and several motor vehicle violations, including reckless and negligent driving.

Pub Date: 2/21/99

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