Lawyers want to exclude defendant's initial statement after reportedly running over ex, setting self on fire

Jim Melwert
October 04, 2019 - 4:27 pm
Lawrence Crawley

Jim Melwert/KYW Newsradio

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NORRISTOWN, Pa. (KYW Newsradio) — The lawyer for a man accused of stabbing his ex-girlfriend, then running her over repeatedly, doesn’t want a jury to hear a statement he gave to detectives.

Lawrence Crawley is charged with first-degree murder for stabbing 33-year-old Angela Stith on Aug. 3, 2018, as she left her job at Vector Security in Plymouth Township, then running her over several times.

When Pennsylvania State Police caught up to him on the Pennsylvania Turnpike in Sommerset County, located in western Pennsylvania, Crawley set himself on fire.

He was in a medically induced coma for several days with severe burns on 27% of his body.

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Montgomery County detective William Mitchell testified that when he got to the Pittsburgh hospital, Crawley’s nurses told him he kept asking where the exits were. He said Crawley was awake and alert when he spoke to detectives.

But Crawley’s lawyer, Carrie Allman, argues Crawley had been prescribed a powerful painkiller and sedative and was therefore unable to waive his right to remain silent. And, she says, he never signed or even marked the paper that says he was waiving those rights. 

Mitchell countered, saying Crawley’s hands and arms were bandaged, so he couldn’t hold a pen. And, the burns were so severe that investigators had to wear special clothing to protect him and to protect them.

The murder is caught on video. Shortly after the murder, police say Crawley called his mother and told her he killed Stith, he was sorry, and he was going to kill himself.