Bellefonte man faces felony charges after fatal Rush Township crash last year

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Be prepared when you hit the road. Here are some quick tips on what to do if you are in a car accident

A Bellefonte man involved in a fatal, single-vehicle crash in Rush Township was charged Tuesday with homicide by vehicle while driving under the influence.

Anthony Diguardi Jr., 37, and Renny Baney, 41, visited Jackson’s Bar and Grille on Sept. 1. The duo left the restaurant after about three hours with Diguardi driving and Baney in the passenger’s seat, according to a criminal complaint filed by state police at Rockview.

Instead of following a right curve on the 2300 block of Casanova Road in Rush Township, Diguardi continued straight, struck a street sign and hit a tree head on, according to the complaint.

Two witnesses and a Moshannon Valley EMS paramedic told police that Diguardi said he was drinking alcohol at both the Avondale Hotel and a house party in Winburne “all day,” according to the complaint.

A state police collision analysis and reconstruction specialist determined alcohol was a causal factor in the crash, according to the complaint.

Baney, of Julian, was pronounced dead at the scene. He died of blunt force trauma, according to Centre County Coroner Scott Sayers.

Diguardi was transported to UPMC Altoona for injuries on his left side and upper chest area. His blood alcohol content was 0.141%, according to the complaint. The legal threshold for DUI is 0.08%.

Diguardi was charged with one felony count of homicide by vehicle while driving under the influence, one felony count of an accident involving death, two misdemeanors and five summaries.

He was arraigned Tuesday by District Judge Allen Sinclair, who set bail at $100,000 unsecured. Diguardi did not respond to a request for comment.

Diguardi’s preliminary hearing is scheduled for Wednesday.

Bret Pallotto primarily reports on courts and crime for the Centre Daily Times. He grew up in Lewistown and graduated from Lock Haven University.