Fight Club owner sentenced to up to 40 years in prison for DUI accident that killed Mifflin County teacher
A Coatesville man convicted of murder in an impaired driving accident that killed a Mifflin County high school teacher was sentenced to 20 to 40 years in prison on Friday.
Stuart Wayne Bryant, 61, has been in jail since being convicted in April of the most serious charges against him, including the charge of third degree murder and a separate count of vehicle homicide while driving under the influence.
The sentence was above the mandatory minimum sentences for each felony conviction, but within sentencing guidelines for defendants, like Bryant, without a criminal record. He was also convicted of seven misdemeanors, including recklessly endangering another person, and eight summary traffic offenses.
Bryant owned a boxing, martial arts, and fitness club called Stuart’s Fight Club in Coatesville for over 30 years. According to testimony at trial, he was traveling at 114 mph three seconds before his airbags deployed in the 2019 crash. A post-crash alcohol test came down to 0.212, more than double the legal threshold for DUI .
The collision claimed the life of a well-known and appreciated teacher and trainer: Harry Aultz.
The 49-year-old husband and father of three taught social studies and coached football at the high school and college levels in the Mifflin County School District. Aultz was also the Sunday School Superintendent at his United Methodist Church in Granville, and for several summers had served as Director of the Seven Mountains Scout Camp.
According to police records, Bryant’s car drove through a concrete median at the intersection of US Route 22 and Hoss Drive in Granville Township and crashed into Aultz’s van shortly before 6:45 p.m. on January 28, 2019. .
The Lewistown Newspaper reported that prosecutors presented a series of witnesses who testified that they saw Bryant’s black Dodge Charger driving dangerously in the minutes leading up to the fatal crash, and police also had surveillance camera footage that showed the eastbound car crossing the westbound lane and hitting Aultz Toyota Tundra.
Crash investigators said in April that, based on data extracted from the wreckage of Bryant’s car, Bryant had reached speeds as high as 114 mph on Route 22 before driving on a traffic island. , hitting two traffic signs, crossing the lane heading west and colliding with Aultz’s truck.
Bryant’s attorney, Tim Barrouk, told PennLive in April that his client had never challenged the vehicle homicide or the counts of manslaughter he faced. He argued that Bryant felt “genuine remorse for Mr. Aultz and his family” and accepted responsibility for the behavior that led to the crash.
The trial hinged on whether jurors could properly attribute “malice” to Bryant’s actions, including a situation where there might be no intention to kill, but one defendant showed “indifference. conscious of “an undue and extremely high risk that its actions may cause death from bodily harm.”
The jury concluded that Bryant’s actions had reached that threshold and continued the murder charge for manslaughter.
After the verdict, Aultz’s family released a statement through Mifflin County Victim Services staff. “They just wanted to thank the district attorney and his staff for their work, and thank the community for all their love and support through this ordeal,” said Jami Glick, the county’s victim attorney.
Glilck said on Friday the statement was still true.
“The family is happy with the pain,” she said.
Barrouk previously declined to comment when asked why Bryant was in Mifflin County that day and what he had done in the hours leading up to the collision, areas that were not covered in the testimony from the trial.
According to arrest records, Granville Township police said they attempted to question Bryant the day after the accident at the hospital where he was being treated for his injuries, but he told police he was only remembered being on the phone and “passed out”. He then refused to speak further with police after consulting his lawyer by phone, police said.
Bryant did not testify during the three-day trial.
Barrouk could not be reached immediately on Friday.
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