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Thursday, May 5, 2016

Fatal crash leads to manslaughter charges

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Manslaughter charges have been filed against a Purdy man after he struck a vehicle head on while reportedly driving drunk. A 10-year-old girl in the vehicle he struck died from injuries suffered in the crash.

Barry County Prosecuting Attorney Johnnie Cox filed two charges of felony vehicular assault charges, one charge of involuntary manslaughter and one charge of driving while intoxicated, third offense, against Gregory Swaffar, 26, on Sunday following the Saturday night crash on Highway 37 one mile south of Butterfield.

The wreck occurred at 11:40 p.m. when Swaffar, driving a 1999 Dodge Dakota, crossed the center line and struck a 1995 Mercury Sable, driven by Kenneth M. Keif, 33, of Washburn, head on.

An occupant in the Swaffar vehicle, Sandra S Larson, 46, of Shell Knob, was flown to St. John's Hospital in Joplin.

Keif and a passenger in his vehicle, his daughter, Melissa Keif, 10, of Washburn, were both flown to Cox Hospital South in Springfield where Melissa Keif later succumbed to her injuries.

According to a report from the Missouri State Highway Patrol, none of the parties involved were wearing safety belts.

This is not the first time Swaffar has been arrested for driving while impaired.

Swaffar entered a guilty plea in March 2009 for a DWI arrest taking place on Dec. 20, 2008. At that time he was assigned 20 hours of community service and two years unsupervised probation.

In August of 2010, Swaffar entered a guilty plea in Cassville Municipal Court for a May 21 arrest for excessive blood alcohol content. He was fined a total of $107 for that occurrence.

Swaffar is awaiting disposition on a third DWI charge, that of a prior offender, after an arrest made by the Missouri State Highway Patrol on July 25, 2010. Swaffar is due in court at 1:30 p.m. on Thursday in Cassville on that charge. He is represented by Cassville attorney John Lewright.

Swaffar remains in custody of the Barry County Sheriff's Department in lieu of $50,000 cash only bond.

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