Cops: Ex-trooper charged with DUI in Murrysville crash had suspended license

July 31, 2018

A former state trooper whose driver’s license was suspended for a previous drunken-driving arrest was charged Thursday in connection with a four-vehicle crash in Murrysville this month.

Leah K. Conners, 51, of Salem, was drunk July 13 when her Nissan Titan that was hauling a trailer crashed into three vehicles that were stopped at 4 p.m. on Route 22 at Mellon Road, Murrysville police said in an affidavit.

Conners separated from the state police agency Jan. 12, according to spokesman Cpl. Adam Reed.

She was placed on restricted duty after charges were filed in May 2017, a month after police said she was found passed out in her truck in a Salem McDonald’s restaurant parking lot. Police said in court papers that the truck was running and taking up two spaces in Salem Plaza on April 27. Investigators said she had slurred speech, blood-shot eyes and later admitted to have consumed “some” alcoholic beverages.

In November, she was sentenced on those charges to one year in a probationary program, after which she could have her record expunged. The Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition program for first time offenders and participation in the program is not considered an admission of guilt.

In the latest arrest, police said in an affidavit that Conners spoke quietly, had glassy and bloodshot eyes and “seemed lethargic.”

Conners told investigators that she was distracted by two dogs that were riding in the truck and didn’t realize the other cars had stopped, according to the affidavit.

Paramedics drew blood at the scene and a friend picked up the dogs, police said. Conners is charged with driving under the influence, driving with a suspended license and careless driving.

The charges were sent by summons and a preliminary hearing is set for Sept. 11.

Conners was promoted to sergeant in September 2016 after serving as a trooper since 1991. She previously was assigned to the Bureau of Integrity and Professional Standards and worked at Troop T in Somerset County.

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