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Woman charged with homicide vehicle for striking high school student last year, police say

Marie McGahan, 25, struck a high school student as they were attempting to board a school bus in Newberry Township last year, police said. The victim later died.
Credit: Crimewatch

YORK HAVEN, Pa. — A York County woman has been charged with homicide by vehicle and other offenses after police say she struck a 16-year-old high school student who was boarding a school bus last year.

The Northeastern student, identified as Arianna Landis, later died of injuries sustained in the incident, according to police.

Marie C. McGahan, 25, of Red Lion, struck the student with her vehicle as they boarded a school bus on the 500 block of York Haven Road in Newberry Township on Oct. 26, 2022, police allege. 

The school bus was stopped and had its warning lights flashing at the time the pedestrian was struck, which was shortly after 7 a.m., according to police.

McGahan's silver 2021 Hyundai was traveling toward the bus in the opposing lane of traffic when it struck the student, who was walking toward to the bus to board it, witnesses told police.

McGahan, who remained at the scene, told police she must have been traveling too fast, because by the time she saw the bus lights, it was too late, according to the criminal complaint affidavit filed in the case.

A witness who was driving behind McGahan for several miles prior to the crash told police that McGahan's vehicle was not speeding, but said he could clearly see the bus and its warning lights prior to the crash. McGahan did not appear to apply her brakes, nor did she attempt any evasive maneuvers prior to striking the pedestrian, the witness told police.

McGahan submitted to field sobriety tests and an evaluation by a certified drug recognition expert and showed no signs of drug or alcohol impairment, police said.

According to police, McGahan said she had only slept about two or three hours the previous night and that she "must have been distracted."

McGahan was not wearing corrective or contact lenses, which was a restriction on her driver's license, police claim.

The pedestrian suffered serious injuries in the crash and was unconscious at the scene when police arrived, according to the complaint. The victim was transported to a local hospital for treatment, but died of injuries sustained in the incident on Nov. 22, 2022, police said.

Investigators staged multiple re-enactments of the crash on June 7, 2023, and determined that McGahan had sufficient time to stop her vehicle before striking the pedestrian, the complaint states.

Police filed charges against McGahan on August 22. In addition to homicide by vehicle, McGahan is also charged with four summary traffic offenses, including two counts of careless driving, according to police.

Her case has been held over for court after McGahan waived her arraignment, according to court records. She is free after posting bail of $10,000 and is awaiting trial.

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