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Woman Accused In 2017 Fatal Hit-And-Run Takes Stand In Own Defense

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) -- A woman accused of causing a fatal hit-and-run crash in Ross Township took the stand in her own defense Friday.

Police say 39-year-old Melinda Gregor struck and killed 50-year-old Michael Menner on Babcock Boulevard in December 2017.

(Source: Facebook)

Gregor told the jury she had just picked up a pizza and was driving on a dark and rainy night when something smashed into her windshield.

She says she thought it was a deer, and defense attorney Phil DiLucente says she wasn't the only one.

"One witness said that she thought that Melinda Gregor had hit a deer. Only until she saw the news that she realized it was a person. My client, who didn't see anything but a smashed windshield, also testified that she thought she hit a deer," DiLucente said.

Gregor says she pulled over and got out to check her car. She also looked down the road where it happened before leaving.

"The reality is, if you get out of your car in the rain, you're out there for a minute and you don't see anything, I think any logical person would say they must have hit an animal or something along that line," DiLucente said.


The assistant district attorney, however, says Gregor had a responsibility to go back to the scene and she decided not to do so.

Gregor said she was on the phone with her boyfriend, who was upset that she damaged the car, which had been a gift from his grandfather.

Additionally, Gregor says her young daughter had gotten out of the car. That's why she decided to leave.

Twelve hours later, she learned the tragic news.

(Photo Credit: KDKA)

"She feels horrible. She apologized to the family, but she did not have that knowledge the day that it transpired. It only came the next day, and what does she immediately do? Turns herself in to police, or at least attempts to," DiLucente said.

The jury deliberated for almost two hours Friday before they were sent home. They will resume deliberations Monday morning.

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