Bail yanked from fatal crash driver

ELLSWORTH — The Bangor man charged with manslaughter for a fatal crash in Bar Harbor in 2015 will remain in jail until his trial.

A judge in Hancock County Unified Criminal Court on Friday granted a motion filed by the district attorney’s office to revoke Miguel Garcia’s bail.

Garcia had been free on bail while awaiting trial on the manslaughter charge until July 26, when Bangor police charged him with violating the conditions of his release, operating an unregistered vehicle, operating with false registration and two counts of criminal mischief as the result of a single-vehicle accident in that city. At the time, Hancock County District Attorney Matthew Foster said Garcia tested positive for opiates and other drugs when he was booked into jail.

Foster said this week that Garcia’s trial, originally scheduled for September, has been moved to the November docket. Foster was not sure why there was a change.

Garcia was the driver of a box truck owned by Builders Installed Products of Hermon that veered off Route 3 in Bar Harbor on Sept. 15, 2015, and into a scenic turnout where it struck a car owned by Roger Beghtol of Hendersonville, N.C. The impact pushed the car into Beghtol, who was standing outside. Beghtol died from injuries sustained in the accident.

Blood tests taken after the Sept. 15 crash showed that Garcia had five different drugs in his system and had recently taken heroin, according to the district attorney’s office.

In April 2016, a grand jury indicted Garcia on counts of manslaughter, aggravated criminal operating while under the influence, aggravated assault and reckless conduct with a dangerous weapon. Subsequently, a warrant was issued for his arrest. Bangor police arrested him on the warrant on May 4, 2016, after officers spotted him riding in a vehicle. At the time, Garcia allegedly was illegally in possession of prescription pills and police additionally charged him with unlawful possession of scheduled drugs.

He later was released on $7,500 bail. At his initial court appearance in June 2016, Garcia denied the charges against him.

Manslaughter is a Class A crime punishable by up to 30 years in prison.


Mark Good

Mark Good

Reporter at Mount Desert Islander
Mark Good

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