Two Slippery Rock University students have been charged after an on-campus vehicular accident that seriously injured one of the students earlier in the month.
Police said Noah Sunseri, 19, and an unnamed passenger picked up another student, Thomas Becker, 20, from The Grove Apartments on April 9 around midnight. He then planned to take the individual back to their on-campus dormitory.
The criminal complaint said Becker was highly intoxicated.
The Rocket is not naming the passenger of the vehicle since they were the only person who was not charged with anything resulting from this incident.
Sunseri dropped off Becker on-campus by the Lower Stadium Lot C, which is the closest parking lot to Building F. Once out of the vehicle, Becker ran back towards the vehicle and clung to the passenger side door of the 2010 Kia Forte Koup.
Becker was dragged 291 feet before losing his grip on the passenger side door, and then run over by the right rear tire of the vehicle. When Sunseri felt a bump near the back of the vehicle, he stopped and called 911 immediately.
Once Slippery Rock University Police arrived on scene at 12:25 a.m., they found that Becker was still breathing but unresponsive to any of the officers’ questions, according to the criminal complaint.
Becker was then airlifted by Stat Medevac and transported to the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) Presbyterian Hospital.
Becker sustained four broken ribs, a bruised lung, small, chipped fragments on his spine and a very small brain bleed. Becker’s current condition is unknown.
The accident was caught on a security camera by Building F, which police say matched Sunseri’s account of the event.
Becker was charged with a third-degree misdemeanor for disorderly conduct which carries a maximum penalty of up to a year in prison.
Sunseri, the driver of the vehicle, was charged with a second-degree misdemeanor for recklessly endangering another person (REAP), as well as two other summary offenses for careless driving and reckless driving.
The punishment for a second degree REAP misdemeanor is a $500 – $5,000 fine, two years in prison, or possibly both.
This accident was just one of many that occurred in the Slippery Rock area that weekend and as a result the university reached out to the students via email the next morning.
The university asked students who wanted to talk with someone about the events to reach out to the SRU Counseling Center at 724.738.2034 or submit a Care Referral. Faculty and staff members needing assistance can reach out through the State Employee Assistance Program at 800.692.7459.
The email encouraged students to assist those who may be intoxicated and in need of medical attention by contacting Student Health Services, which is located at Rhodes Hall, at 724.738.2052
For an on-campus emergency, students should call the University Police at 724.738.3333, or 911 if the incident is off-campus.