Man accused of hit and run of Amish family waives hearing, proceeds to court

SETH NOLAN/Sun-Gazette
Christopher Cranmer, 37, of Montgomery, arrives for his preliminary hearing before District Judge Jon Kemp, Friday afternoon.

SETH NOLAN/Sun-Gazette Christopher Cranmer, 37, of Montgomery, arrives for his preliminary hearing before District Judge Jon Kemp, Friday afternoon.

The man who allegedly rear-ended a horse-drawn buggy, injuring six of the seven family members riding in it last month, waived his preliminary hearing Friday.

Christopher Cranmer, 37, of Montgomery, will be proceeding to court to resolve his sixth DUI case, according to court records. He is expected to accept a plea deal.

Cranmer was charged a day after he allegedly drove away from the scene where he hit a buggy on Route 54.

Although he didn’t speak during the proceeding in front of District Judge Jon Kemp, he said he “really, really screwed up,” when he was arraigned with aggravated assault by vehicle and another charge including DUI. Cranmer also faces a string of lesser charges.

Cranmer was driving the pickup truck with Sylviesue Smith, 37, of Muncy, while intoxicated on Sept. 24, police said in an affidavit.

At about 9:30 p.m., Cranmer struck the buggy in the 300 block of Route 54 in Clinton Township.

The crash left the buggy in shambles and six members of the family were transported to Geisinger Medical Center in Danville. Two were flown by an emergency medical helicopter.

A veterinarian also was called to the scene shortly after the crash to tend to the injured horse.

Christopher Stolzfus Fisher, Kathryn Fisher and five juveniles ages 13, 11, 9, 7 and 5 were in the buggy at the time.

A person driving behind the truck that night told state police he saw the truck hit the buggy from behind and speed off. A resident also saw the truck driving away.

It was a neighbor who saw the heavy front end damage on Cranmer’s truck that led police to his home.

At the time of his arraignment, Cranmer was jailed in the Lycoming County Prison in lieu of $200,000 bail.

After waiving his preliminary hearing, his attorney asked for bail to be modified to $99,000 so he could work while incarcerated.

“Mr. Cranmer is not going to make bail, but this would give him more freedom to work in the prison,” said public defender Joshua Bower. “With his bail at $200,000 he is stuck on one floor and it limits his movement and ability to work.”

Kemp said $100,000 was the best he could do given the circumstances.

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