Woman accused of deadly DUI hit-and-run in Ross Township appears in court

ROSS TOWNSHIP, Pa. — The case against a woman who police said is responsible for the January hit-and-run death of a pedestrian in Ross Township will move forward.

Erin Petroski appeared in court Friday morning for a preliminary hearing on charges of Homicide by Vehicle, Accident Involving Death, Involuntary Manslaughter, and DUI after Ross Township police said she hit and killed Elizabeth Griser last month, then left the scene.

Previous coverage: Lawyer for woman charged in fatal Ross Township hit-and-run says client had ‘no idea’ she hit anyone

Four witnesses testified Friday morning, three of whom are officers with the Ross Township Police Department. They showed surveillance video from the night Griser died. The fourth witness was Petroski’s boyfriend, who testified she knew she hit something when she came home.

“Part of today helps explain what happened today, how it was not intentional, how alcohol had nothing to do with this accident…and it is an accident,” said defense attorney Steve Townsend.

A patrolman testified that police were able to track a white Toyota Highlander to Petroski’s home, using surveillance video and vehicle registration. He said when he arrived at her house, Petroski was visibly upset when she answered the door and said he could smell alcohol on her when taking her in to be detained.

Previous coverage: Charges filed in deadly hit-and-run on busy Ross Township road

A detective took Petroski to the hospital for a blood test, which he testified came back .11, but her defense attorney questions what he calls a “delayed process” of obtaining that sobriety test, saying that alcohol had nothing to do with this situation.

“She’s very remorseful of what happened here. She did not do anything intentional. She was not under the influence at the time of this accident. It’s a very heavy burden for her to carry, knowing that she caused this person’s death,” Townsend said.

Petroski will be formally arraigned on March 28th.