Vehicular manslaughter alleged in Mid's death

December 01, 2006|By Nia-Malika Henderson | Nia-Malika Henderson,sun reporter

The 22-year-old man who police say was behind the wheel in a crash that killed a Naval Academy midshipman had been pulled over in October for allegedly driving 120 mph on the Baltimore Beltway, court records show.

Patrick T. Britton-Harr of Pensacola, Fla., was charged Wednesday with vehicular manslaughter, Anne Arundel County police said yesterday. He could face more charges, police said. Officers on the scene of Friday's crash that killed Charles B. Carr, 20, of Edgewater said both men might have been drinking.

Toxicology results won't be available for about six weeks, according to Kristin Riggin, a spokeswoman for the Anne Arundel County state's attorney's office.

According to court records, Britton-Harr has been charged twice with speeding and once with drunken driving in recent months. On Sept. 8, police stopped him for traveling 83 mph in a 65-mph zone on U.S. 50 near Rutland Road in Davidsonville. He pleaded guilty and paid an $80 fine on Oct. 16, court records show.

On Oct. 8, Britton-Harr was charged with speeding, driving while impaired and negligent driving after he allegedly traveled 120 mph in a 55-mph zone on the outer loop of the Beltway at Greenspring Avenue.

He is scheduled to appear in Baltimore County District Court on Feb. 6 for that incident.

Police said Britton-Harr was driving a BMW coupe north, with Carr in the passenger seat, at 1:30 a.m. Nov. 24 on Glen Isle Road near Riva Road in Riva when he missed a curve, drove off the right side of the road into four wooden posts, then rammed head-on into a large oak tree that was about 5 feet from the road.

Police said they smelled alcohol on Britton-Harr, who suffered arm and leg injuries. He was released on $75,000 bond on Wednesday.

More than 800 people attended Carr's funeral Tuesday at the Naval Academy Chapel. The systems engineer major known as Ben had planned to attend Naval Postgraduate School in California.

Charles W. Carr, his father, said he did not know Britton-Harr, only that he attended St. Mary's High School in Annapolis along with his son and had relatives who attended the Naval Academy.

"I think it's just another amount of anguish for all those communities," he said of the charges against Britton-Harr. "I hope that the communities are as supportive of Britton-Harr as they have been of us."

nia.henderson@baltsun.com

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