A criminal indictment against a State Police detective who seriously injured a Philadelphia man in a pre-dawn car crash in Camden County might be dismissed because troopers who responded to the incident never tested him for alcohol.
The trooper, Detective Sgt. William Billingham, was off duty in March 2009 when his unmarked car slammed into the rear of a sport utility vehicle driven by Clayton Tanksley on Interstate 295, rolling it onto its roof and leaving the man hanging upside down from his seat belt as he awaited help.
The troopers who responded said in their accident report that Billingham "apparently fell asleep."
Last March, Billingham was charged with reckless driving in Lawnside Borough Municipal Court and suspended without pay. He was indicted four months later for assault by auto, and has pleaded not guilty. So far, the judge overseeing the case has not allowed evidence of his intoxication to be admitted as evidence.
New details in court documents obtained by The Star-Ledger now show two emergency responders smelled alcohol in the ambulance in which he was riding. A third responder was thanked by a supervisor for not mentioning anything about alcohol in a medical report, according to the documents.
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