JOHNSTOWN, Pa. (WTAJ) — A Johnstown man is facing charges after he was accused of causing a high-speed DUI crash that resulted in a woman losing her fingers.
Robert Zabala, 45, was allegedly driving a red Chevy Camaro on April 23 at 1:16 a.m. when he crashed on the Central Avenue bridge. According to court documents, a Johnstown police officer was monitoring traffic in the area when the crash occured.
The officer was parked next to an old car wash on Ohio Street when he heard the sound of a vehicles engine accelerating at a high rate of speed. Shortly after a loud boom was heard and the officer drove toward the sound.
According to police, a frantic witness in the parking lot of a Sheetz store said a car wrecked on the bridge. The officer arrived at the scene and found the Camaro sideways in the westbound lane and in the middle of the bridge.
Police then found Zabala in the driver seat of the vehicle. Zabala said he was okay and told the officer a woman was riding with him, according to a criminal complaint.
The woman was found laying on the ground and appeard to have suffered a serious injury to her right arm. According to police, numerous fingers were missing from the woman’s hand and she had a large cut near her bicep.
The officer noted in court documents, the woman’s cloths were soaked with blood but it did not appear she was bleeding from an artery.
According to the complaint, Zabala claimed he was driving 30 mph. Police said Zabala smelled of alcohol and told the officer he had four or five rum and cokes when he was asked if he had anything to drink.
Zabala underwent multiple field sobritety tests where police said he showed signs of impairent. During a one legged stand test, Zabala stopped before the officer told him to stop and he was placed under arrest, according to the complaint.
After investigating, police determined the Camaro crash into a sign in front of the right side and corner of the bridge. Officers noted in court documents a door was found in a grass area to the right of the crash scene and patrial fingers were found near the sign and on the sidewalk.
Security camera video from the neardy Sheetz store showed the Camaro traveling at high speed moments before the crash, according to police.
Zabala was arragined on Tuesday, May 2 and placed in the Cambria County Prison before posting 10% of his $25,000 bail on Wednesday, May 10. He’s charged with felony aggravated assault by vehicle while DUI, DUI and reckless driving.
A formal arraingment is scheduled for Tuesday, July 18.