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Town Official Fined $500, License Revoked in Fatal Accident

March 2, 1985

ELIZABETHTOWN, N.Y. (AP) _ A town official who pleaded guilty to driving while intoxicated in an accident that killed an elderly pedestrian was fined $500 Friday and his license was revoked for three years.

Essex Town Supervisor James R. Morse Jr. also was placed on three years’ probation by Acting Essex County Judge Jan Plumadore, and ordered to take remedial safe-driving classes. It was the maximum sentence Morse could have received.

Morse pleaded guilty to driving while intoxicated in February.

Morse, 43, was charged after the truck he was driving on Jan. 28, 1984 struck and killed Olive Anson, 78.

At the time of the accident, Morse refused to take a breath test.

Relatives and friends of the dead woman had said Morse evaded indictment on vehicular manslaughter charges because of his high position in local Republican politics. But in public comments before the sentencing, Plumador ″made very clear the fact that Morse was treated as any other defendant before him would have been,″ said Court Clerk Cecile Hanfield.Morse remains town supervisor.

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