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Mother, son charged with giving false information to police after crash

Published April 16. 2018 01:25PM

A mother and son from Tamaqua have been accused of giving false information to police following a crash last month.

Wendy Fredericks, 56, of the 300 block of Spruce Street, allegedly told an officer she was behind the wheel during a crash on Route 443, but later admitted it was her son, Robert Fredericks, 35, whose license was suspended at the time.

According to Mahoning Township Police Department, at 6:58 a.m. March 30, an officer was dispatched to the 2800 block of Blakeslee Boulevard Drive West for a motor vehicle crash.

Dispatchers said there was a call on the crash at 6:35 a.m. and that they dispatched state police.

The communications center told Mahoning Township patrolman Tyler Meek the caller stated that no one was around the vehicle at this time.

At 6:59 a.m., the communications center told Meek that they received another call about the crash from Wendy Fredericks and that she was the driver and was on scene.

The officer arrived at 7:08 a.m. and made contact with Wendy, who said that she swerved to miss a deer, causing her to cross the roadway and strike a utility pole, as her vehicle then continued into a field for about 200 feet.

Wendy said that her son, Robert, was a passenger in the vehicle.

While the vehicle was being removed from the field, the officer observed the driver’s seat was back really far, which would have made driving difficult for Wendy.

The officer then questioned Wendy if she was the driver or if Robert was the driver. Both Wendy and Robert told him that Wendy was the driver.

During the crash investigation, police learned that Robert’s driver’s license is suspended.

Police then contacted the witness who reported the crash and spoke with him about what they saw. He said he observed a vehicle in the field and went down to check to see if there were any injuries.

The witness was unable to locate anyone around or inside the vehicle and called 911 at 6:35 a.m.

At 12:10 p.m., Wendy came to the station for an interview and provided police a written statement in which she said that she was driving the vehicle. Later during the interview, Wendy told the officer that she was not driving the vehicle and was not present when the crash occurred.

Wendy said that she received a call from Robert at 6:14 a.m. saying that he had been in a crash.

Wendy then went to the crash scene and called 911 at 6:58 a.m.

When questioned as to why she said she was the driver, Wendy said that she did not want the insurance involved. Wendy acknowledged that she was aware that Robert’s license was suspended several weeks before the incident.

Wendy Fredericks is charged with false reports to law enforcement authorities, criminal conspiracy, and false reports. Robert Fredericks is charged with false reports to law enforcement authorities, criminal conspiracy, false reports, driving while operating privilege is suspended or revoked, careless driving and driving vehicle at an unsafe speed.

Both are scheduled to have preliminary hearings at 1:45 p.m. May 9 before District Judge Casimir T. Kosciolek of Lansford.

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