Alanah Duffy, QMI Agency
First posted: Monday, January 13, 2014 06:11 PM EST | Updated: Monday, January 13, 2014 06:42 PM EST
BROCKVILLE, Ont. — An Ontario man who ran over and killed a teen with his truck, and a friend who helped conspire a coverup to move the body to a skate park and make it look like a skateboarding accident, pleaded guilty to several charges Monday.
According to agreed facts read in court, Rusty Pearce, 22, and Joseph Greer, 24, were partying together in the early morning hours of Sept. 1 when Pearce, driving an intoxicated Greer back to a party, ran over 16-year-old Aaron Stevenson, skateboarding home in Brockville, Ont.
Shaken after hitting the teen, the pair continued to drive to the party with the body of Stevenson in the cab of the truck, where it landed after impact. There, the men came up with a plan: Drive Stevenson’s body to an old skate park in town and make it look like a skateboarding mishap.
The two drove to the skate park, dragging the body out of the truck and placing it on the side of the road.
Pearce stayed behind with the body while Greer drove away in the pickup.
Pearce then phoned 911 at 1:35 a.m. and told the operator he found a body while walking home.
“He’s, like, on the side of the road. I don’t know if he was drinking and passed out. I can’t look at that body,” Pearce said in the 911 call that was played for the court.
“I don’t really know what to do, ma’am.”
Pearce refused to attempt CPR, then left.
Neighbours, however, watched the scene unfold, and police soon learned a different story.
One woman went outside and discovered Stevenson’s body. She told police about the pickup truck and the two men.
Meanwhile, Greer was pulled over and charged with impaired driving. Police, noticing the damage to the truck, questioned Greer about the body at the skate park and he admitted his role.
Pearce returned to the party and admitted to friends what had happened. He went home and told his mother the same: “I’m in big trouble. I’m going away for life. I hit someone. They were right there; they were right there, Mom. I couldn’t do anything,” court heard.
He was arrested later that morning.
During the more than two-hour appearance Monday, Greer and Pearce sat side-by-side in the prisoner’s dock. Greer dabbed his eyes at times while Pearce looked down.
Pearce was facing charges of leaving the scene of an accident, indignity to a dead body and obstruct justice. Greer was charged with indignity to a dead body and impaired driving.
The two are to return Feb. 20 for sentencing submissions and victim impact statements.