The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Local News

June 17, 2013

Bedford trial set to open

Defendant argues he’s not responsible for friend’s death

BEDFORD — A man charged with involuntary manslaughter in the death of a western Bedford County man he called his best friend will attempt to convince a jury that he should not be held  responsible for his death.

Randy Scott Foor, 52, of Chalybeate Road, Bedford will go on trial Wednesday for the Aug. 11 death of Dennis Sprigg, 49, of Manns Choice.

Police say Foor pushed Sprigg, causing him to hit his head on pavement.

“We picked a jury and we’re ready to start Wednesday morning,” Bedford County District Attorney William Higgins said Monday.

The jury of eight women and four men plus two alternates was picked last week for the trial expected to wrap up Thursday.

Foor and Sprigg were at a party at Foor’s home in Bedford Township at the time of the incident. Both had been drinking alcohol and fighting over softball when Sprigg went to the ground.

Higgins hopes to prove that Foor pushed Sprigg with such force that the victim lost his balance, falling backward and striking his head with significant impact, causing the blunt force trauma listed as the cause of death.

Following his fall, witnesses told police it immediately became apparent that Sprigg had lost consciousness and he began bleeding from his right ear.

He was taken by medical helicopter to Memorial Medical Center, Johns-town, and he died about seven weeks later on Sept. 28.

Foor was then charged with involuntary manslaughter and aggravated assault.

Late last year, Foor entered a guilty plea to involuntary manslaughter in exchange for dismissal of the aggravated assault charge.

In March, on his sentencing date, Foor asked to withdraw the guilty plea because he felt he did nothing wrong.

He said he felt he was innocent of involuntary manslaughter, but was confused at his preliminary hearing.

While he wanted to say something at the guilty plea, he remained silent.

Foor’s attorney, Thomas Dickey of Altoona, could not be reached for comment Monday, but indicated during jury selection that he likely will attempt to prove that Foor was acting in self-defense when he pushed Sprigg.

Higgins said he has seen nothing in the case that would warrant the defense.

“There’s no evidence here that it was self-defense,” Higgins said. “Dennis Sprigg is dead because of the acts of Randy Foor.”

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