By BOB OLIVER
HEIGHTS — The man accused of a hit-and-run crash that sent three children to the hospital last month pled guilty to two of the six charges against him.
Eric Michael Leighty, 24, pled guilty to one count each of driving with a suspended license and causing serious injury and failure to stop at the scene of an accident during a disposition conference before Wayne County Circuit Court Judge James Chylinski April 14.
The operating with a suspended license and failure to stop counts are felonies with penalties of up to five years in prison and a $5,000 fine each.
Leighty is scheduled to be sentenced by Chylinski at 9 a.m. Wednesday.
Leighty was originally charged with two counts of operating a motor vehicle with a suspended or revoked operators license causing serious injury, failure to stop at the scene of an accident, operating a motor vehicle with a suspended or revoked license second offense and two counts of moving violation causing serious impairment of body functions before agreeing to plead guilty to the reduced charges.
According to Dearborn Heights police, Leighty was traveling east on Colgate in his vehicle about 2:25 p.m March 7 when he struck a silver Buick traveling south on Telegraph. After the impact the Buick continued until it struck a utility pole near Telegraph and Stanford.
Three children, aged 4, 7 and 8 years old, and their aunt were traveling in the Buick and were taken to local hospitals after the crash with two of the children initially being listed in serious condition.
Cpl. Leonard Stewart said both children have since been released from Children’s Hospital of Michigan.
Leighty fled the scene of the crash but was arrested the next day after a resident called police and reported that Leighty’s vehicle had recently received front end damage and could possibly be the suspect vehicle.
Police responded and compared vehicle parts left at the crash site to Leighty’s vehicle and concluded that they were a match.
Leighty was taken into custody without incident and did not report any injuries from the collision.
Alcohol and drugs are not suspected to have been a factor in the crash.
(Bob Oliver can be reached at [email protected].)