Towanda man sentenced 6-18 years for crash that killed elderly couple

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TOWANDA, Pa. (WETM) – Nathan Beers, the 28-year-old who killed an elderly couple in a 2019 DUI crash, was sentenced to 6-18 years in a Pennsylvania State Correctional facility for two felony counts of second-degree Homicide by Vehicle While DUI, according to Bradford County District Attorney Chad Salsman.

Beers was also fined $2,000, ordered to pay $3,045 in restitution, and ordered to pay court costs. Upon release, Beers’ driving privileges will be suspended for twelve months.

On May 11, 2019, Pennsylvania State Police responded to State Route 414 for a two-car fatal crash. Police found a gray 2011 Silverado was traveling westbound on Route 414 approaching the Burlington Turnpike. A white 2003 Mercury Grand Marquis was found to have made a left turn onto State Route 414 eastbound from the turnpike. The Silverado hit the Mercury head-on in the intersection, causing the Mercury to spin clockwise.

Beers was identified as the driver of the Silverado and life-flighted to Robert Packer Hospital with unknown injuries. According to the crash report, EMTs reported Beers smelling of alcohol when they pulled him out of the vehicle. At the hospital, Beers admitted that he drank shots of Jim Beam and an unknown amount of beer.

State Police reported that Beer’s blood alcohol content was .186%, more than two times the legal limit of .08%.

Florence Planishek, the driver of the Mercury, and Albert Planishek, a passenger who was ejected out of the front passenger window, were both pronounced dead at the scene by Bradford County Coroner Tom Carman.

Beers pled guilty in September 2020 to the DUI charges.

“This case was a tragedy for all involved,” said District Attorney Chad M. Salsman. “My message to the community is please don’t drink and drive. It only takes a moment for lives to be forever changed. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims’ family.”

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