Kukharchuck Pleads Guilty: Faces up to 17 years in Prison, Depor - WICU12 HD WSEE Erie, PA News, Sports, Weather, Events

Kukharchuck Pleads Guilty: Faces up to 17 years in Prison, Deportation

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 Pavel Kukharchuck, 55, plead guilty on Wednesday to charges related to a DUI car crash from last August. The accident near Peach St and Miller Street sent a local construction worker to the hospital.

He plead guilty to three charges, the most severe being aggravated assault with a motor vehicle while under DUI, which is a second degree felony. He also plead guilty to DUI with the "highest rate of alcohol," or more than twice the legal limit. His blood alcohol level was .19 percent when his truck slammed into a worker in a construction zone. Kukharchuck also plead guilty to reckless endangerment.

Judge Ernest DiSantis accepted his guilty pleas, which were conveyed through a Russian interpreter.

A Russian native, Kukharchuck also faces deportation.

"Deportation is a concern based on the charges. That's being handled by a lawyer in Pittsburgh. He's facing potentially severe time here, he's plead guilty to a felony two, which is up to 10 years," said Gene Placidi, Kukharchuck's criminal defense attorney.

The DUI charge is Kukharchuck's third within the last decade, which carries a mandatory minimum sentence of one year in prison. His maximum sentence could be up to 17 years. Any deportation, if it is sentenced, would occur after he serves prison time.

Sentencing will take place on August 19th in the Erie County Courthouse at 9am.
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