Mayo man pleads guilty in fatal wreck


A 32-year-old Mayo man pleaded guilty yesterday in Circuit Court to vehicular manslaughter in connection with a November 1991 head-on collision that killed an 18-year-old Harwood woman.

Alvin Edward Coates of the 1200 block of Shesley Road was driving north on Muddy Creek Road in Harwood about 3:45 p.m. on Nov. 17 when his car crossed the center line into the path of a car driven by Michele Lee Levelle.

In a statement of facts read in court by prosecutor Jennifer L. Spivak, witnesses told police that Coates swerved off onto the right-hand shoulder of the road before crossing over into the opposite lane of traffic. Investigators found a 30-foot tire mark at the accident scene that indicated Coates never applied his brakes.

Ms. Levelle was pronounced dead at the scene. Coates later tested positive for cocaine and had a blood alcohol level of .10 percent, which is the legal limit for driving while intoxicated.

In exchange for his guilty plea, other charges, including driving while intoxicated were dropped. Coates will be sentenced Sept. 18.

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