Albemarle Co. Judge Allowing Toxicology Test in Fatal Train Crash Case
An Albemarle County judge says info used by officers to obtain a search warrant in a fatal train crash case can be used. Dana W. Naylor, Jr. is charged with involuntary manslaughter and DUI maiming.
ALBEMARLE COUNTY, Va. (WVIR) - An Albemarle County judge says information used by officers to obtain a search warrant in a fatal train crash case can be used at trial.
Judge Cheryl Higgins announced her decision in Albemarle Circuit Court Wednesday, January 30. The defense had asked the judge last week to throw out a toxicology test for Dana William Naylor Junior, who is charged with involuntary manslaughter and DUI maiming.
The commonwealth believes Naylor disregarded warnings when he drove a Time Disposal trash truck around the train tracks gates on Lanetown Road January 31, 2018. A chartered Amtrak train struck the truck, seriously injuring Dennis James Patrick Eddy and killing 28-year-old Christopher Sachem Foley.
An officer thought Naylor was drunk, and obtained a search warrant to get a blood sample for a toxicology test. No alcohol was detected, but the test revealed Naylor had THC in his system.
Naylor’s attorney claimed police lied to get that warrant, and asked Judge Higgins to not allow the results of the toxicology test to be presented to jurors.
The judge sided with the commonwealth, but did lecture them about the four-sentence narrative used to obtain the search warrant. At one point, Higgins even questioned how much more of an investigation the officer really did.
Judge Higgins also said a medical witness for the commonwealth can be questioned about THC levels, but the judge will hear from that witness before any jury does.
Naylor's three-day jury trial is scheduled to begin February 25.