Apr. 22, 1991 Phoenixville Chester County Pennsylvania, USA
Apr. 14, 2009 Downingtown Chester County Pennsylvania, USA
Daily Local News, April 17, 2009
Nicolette A. "Nikki" Pomon, 17, of Downingtown, passed away suddenly on Tuesday, April 14, 2009.
Born in Phoenixville, she was the beloved daughter of Kevin D. and Grace Mack Pomon.
Nikki attended Chester County High School. Prior to that, she attended Downingtown East High School and the Center for Arts and Technology.
She is survived by her brother, Kevin D. Jr., and sister, Abby R. Pomon, both at home. She is also survived by her maternal grandmother, Sylvia Mack of Florida; and paternal grandparents, Richard and Dianne Pomon of Pottstown.
She was predeceased by her daughter, Lillian Grace Pomon-Keif.
A funeral service will take place at 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, April 18, at Calvary Fellowship Church, 95 W. Devon Drive, Downingtown, where family and friends may call from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Interment will be in Northwood Cemetery, Downingtown.
Memorial contributions to her burial fund may be made to The James J. Terry Funeral Home, 736 E. Lancaster Ave., Downingtown, PA 19335.
EAST BRANDYWINE — The funeral for the 17-year-old expectant mother killed in a car crash here Tuesday is scheduled for Saturday (April 18, 2009).
Nicolette "Nikki" Pomon, of Downingtown, and her unborn daughter, Lillian Grace Pomon-Kief, were killed in a crash on Route 282 during rainy conditions. Pomon was expected to have labor induced the next day.
Pomon was pronounced dead at the scene. Chester County Chief Deputy Coroner Norman Goodman said an autopsy showed Pomon died from multiple traumatic injuries. The baby died from head injuries, he said.
Officials said Pomon was wearing her seat belt when the vehicle she was riding in collided with a school bus, officials said. The vehicle's airbags also deployed, officials said.
Pomon's funeral is slated for 1:30 p.m. Saturday at Calvary Fellowship Church, 95 W. Devon Drive, Exton. A viewing will be at the church Saturday from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Interment will be in Northwood Cemetery, Downingtown.
James J. Terry Funeral Home in Downingtown is handling the arrangements. Contributions to her burial fund may be made to the funeral home at 736 E. Lancaster Ave., Downingtown, PA 19335.
Pomon had been attending Chester County High School and had previously attended Downingtown East High School and the Center for the Arts and Technology.
Pomon's friend, Marissa Eldridge, described Pomon Wednesday as an upbeat girl who was growing increasingly excited for motherhood, particularly after her baby shower, which was held late last month.
"She was probably the most easy-going person I've ever met in my life — just carefree. She always had a smile on her face. She was just happy," Eldridge said.
This week friends of Pomon used online social networks to express their grief. More than 1,000 people have joined a Facebook memorial page for Pomon.
East Brandywine police are still investigating the crash.
The driver, Meghan Obendorfer, 18, of Downingtown, lost control of her car about 4:30 p.m. Tuesday while heading west in the 900 block of Route 282 between Reeds and Corner Ketch roads. Police said when the vehicle rounded a curve the car fishtailed on the wet roadway.
The vehicle went sideways and slammed into the front of a school bus, which was occupied only by its driver.
Obendorfer was taken to Reading Hospital, where she is reportedly in stable condition in the intensive care unit, police said. The bus driver, Steven Dilworth, 38, of Downingtown, was taken to Brandywine Hospital, where he was treated and released, police said.
Authorities have asked anyone who may have further information regarding this crash to call East Brandywine police at 610-269-4300.
Pomon is survived by her parents, Kevin and Grace Pomon, as well as her brother, Kevin, and sister, Abby; maternal grandmother, Sylvia Mack and paternal grandparents, Richard and Dianne Pomon of Pottstown.
Daily Local News, West Chester, Chester County, Pa Tuesday, June 16, 2009
EAST BRANDYWINE — An 18-year-old motorist faces homicide charges after an investigation allegedly revealed text messaging and speeding in the rain caused a car crash that killed a pregnant teenager.
Police allege that on April 14 Meghan Lydie Obendorfer of Downingtown was in a hurry to deliver marijuana while texting on her cell phone, speeding and navigating a curve on a wet road when her PT Cruiser crossed a double yellow line and collided with a school bus.
Obendorfer's passenger, Nicollette "Nikki" Pomon, 17, of Downingtown and her unborn baby, Lillian Grace, were pronounced dead at the scene. Pomon, who was nine months pregnant, was scheduled to have labor induced the next day, according to her friends.
Police charged Obendorfer this month with homicide by vehicle, involuntary manslaughter, reckless endangerment, speeding, possession or distribution of marijuana and several other traffic violations.
Obendorfer was arraigned in Caln earlier this month and ini
tially taken to Chester County Prison in lieu of $25,000 bail. Then, last week, the District Attorney's Office agreed with the defense to have the bail changed to unsecured, allowing Obendorfer to leave prison.
Obendorfer's preliminary hearing is slated for June 22 before District Judge John F. Anthony in Caln.
The following is investigators' account of the crash, according to court records:
About 4:40 p.m. police responded to the 900 block of Creek Road, where they found both females trapped in the car. The school bus driver was also injured.
Obendorfer was taken to Reading Hospital. The bus driver, Steven Dilworth, 38, was taken to Brandywine Hospital.
Dilworth reportedly told police Obendorfer lost control of the car while going around a curve and her car fishtailed into the bus's lane. Dilworth was reportedly unable to avoid the collision.
While investigating, police allegedly located a knotted piece of plastic containing suspected marijuana inside Obendorfer's car.
Two days later, authorities obtained a search warrant for Obendorfer's car. During the search, police found Obendorfer's cell phone.
A check into Obendorfer's phone records revealed she was en route to deliver marijuana to a juvenile female in Glenmoore.
"A number of the messages show she was in a hurry and behind a school bus at one point," the complaint states.
Police also found a draft text message intended for the Glenmoore juvenile that Obendorfer reportedly had started writing just before the crash.
Reconstruction of the crash showed Obendorfer was traveling 43 mph in the 35 mph zone.
Police said no defects were found during a vehicle inspection.
Attempts to reach Obendorfer's attorney, Glenn Davis, for comment Monday were unsuccessful. ---------------------------------------- Published: Saturday, March 27, 2010 By MICHAEL P. RELLAHAN, Staff Writer WEST CHESTER — A Downingtown teenager who was texting messages moments before slamming into a school bus on Route 282, killing her pregnant passenger, was led from a Common Pleas Courtroom in handcuffs Friday after entering a guilty plea.
Meghan Lydie Obendorfer, 19, was sentenced to one year minus one day to two years minus two days in prison for the April 2009 death of Nichollette "Nikki" Pomon, who was scheduled to give birth to a baby girl the day following the crash.
Obendorfer must serve 14 months in Chester County Prison before becoming eligible for parole.
The case was the first in Chester County in which texting while driving played a significant role in a fatal crash. The case led to a call by county authorities to pass legislation making such activity a criminal offense.
In pleading guilty to charges of homicide by vehicle, recklessly endangering another person, and possession of a small amount of marijuana, Obendorfer tearfully apologized to Pomon's family, who sat passively in the courtroom while she spoke.
"Please understand I am so sorry for what hap
pened," Obendorfer said, reading from a letter she had written. "I would even switch places with her."
In a letter read to Judge Ronald Nagle before sentencing, Pomon's family said their lives had been crushed by her death and they saw no remorse from Obendorfer.
"You have been nothing more than a dark cloud that has hung over our family" since the crash, the letter states. "Our family will never be the same."
On April 14, 2009, Obendorfer and Pomon were in a rented PT Cruiser, racing to deliver $20 worth of marijuana to Obendorfer's friend in Glenmoore. According to Assistant District Attorney Lauren Dentone, who prosecuted the case, cellular records show that in the hour before the crash that claimed Pomon's life, Obendorfer sent or received 32 text messages from her Samsung AT&T phone. The messages from her friend, which Obendorfer opened and read while driving the car, expressed a sense of urgency to deliver the drugs to her home before the girl's father found out what was going on.
At 4:16 p.m. Britanie Moore, the friend, wrote, "Hurry!" Then she wrote, "Hurryhurry!" at 4:19 p.m. and "How far are you?" at 4:40 p.m.
The last message was never received. About 4:30 p.m., Obendorfer lost control of the car on the wet pavement of a winding stretch of Route 282 in East Brandywine and fishtailed into the oncoming lane of traffic, where she collided with a bus. Pomon, 17, was killed instantly.
In discussing the circumstances of the crash, Dentone gave Nagle new information about Obendorfer's behavior. She said she was driving a rented car because she had wrecked the family car in a traffic crash just days before. Then 18 years old, she had only been a licensed driver for a month.
Dentone said that after her arrest on the homicide charges, Obendorfer had continued to get into trouble with the law. Last year, she was charged with retail theft, although charges were reduced to a summary offense. In February, she was cited by state police for driving 82 mph in a 65 mph zone in the Poconos.
"This is not appropriate conduct for someone in the defendant's shoes," she said.
Dentone said her office had fashioned a sentence that would take into account the death of Pomon's unborn child, who was to be named Lillian Grace. Normally, a defendant in Obendorfer's situation would have received a maximum of 12 months behind bars; the additional two months she will spend in prison takes into account the aggravated nature of her crime, Dentone said.
Not only does Pomon's family feel the utter loss of Nicolette, Dentone said, there is also the loss of the unborn child. Pomon's parents "will never get to see or hold their granddaughter," she said.
Obendorfer's attorney, Glenn Davis, told Nagle he had discussed thoroughly the options she was facing by giving up her right to trial and entering the guilty plea. Nagle earlier this year dismissed a motion by Davis to suppress records of the text messages that passed to and from Obendorfer that day; the guilty plea means she cannot appeal that ruling.
Obendorfer, he said, made the decision to enter the guilty plea and accept the prosecution's offer of prison time.
"She is showing courage here today," Davis said, calling Obendorfer a special, kind and gentle person.
Knowing that she participated in the death of a friend, "is more than most people at any age have to face in their lifetimes," Davis said.
Obendorfer's mother, Carrie Obendorfer, told Nagle how devastated her daughter was when she learned of Pomon's death. She received severe head injuries in the crash and was unconscious for some time afterward and had no memory of the crash. When she regained her consciousness, one of the first things she spoke about was missing the birth of Pomon's child.
"'Please tell Nikki I'm sorry I couldn't be there for her," Carrie Obendorfer quoted her daughter as saying. When told that Pomon had died, "She said, 'No, you are lying. Nikki's not dead. It's a terrible joke,'" her mother said.
Carrie Obendorfer and others who read letters to Nagle on her behalf said she was a good person who cares for friends and family, helping out whenever she can.
"There is not a day that goes by that she doesn't think about her friend and her baby," Carrie Obendorfer said. "The Pomons are not the only ones who grieve."
In their letter to the court, the Pomons described how Nicollette's death had overwhelmed them all. Her sister, Abby Pomon, said she has nightmares in which she sees her sister but knows that she is not alive.
Grace Pomon, her mother, said she fell into a deep depression and had to be hospitalized because of it.
Kevin Pomon, her father, suffered a heart attack brought on, he said, by the stress from the tragedy.
"You will serve a short sentence in jail," the couple wrote, addressing Obendorfer. "As for our family, our sentence will be for the rest of our lives."
The Pomons were joined by their daughter and son, Kevin Jr., in court.
The sentence is structured so Obendorfer can remain in Chester County Prison instead of being sent to a state correctional institution. She will become eligible for work release after 10 months, if so granted by the prison, and will serve four years of probation afterward. Nagle also ordered her to reimburse the Pomons more than $8,000 for funeral expenses.
Nagle accepted the plea after some consideration, wondering aloud what he could say to the grieving families.
"The law is inadequate to resolve the tragedies of these incidents," Nagle said. "We live in an age of drugs and permissiveness. It takes tragedies to convince people that there has to be a basic standard of conduct. And people will continue to do things that cause tragic consequences until people understand what life becomes if we don't have a moral compass."
How I would love to have you for a baby sister who I could love, protect and take care of like my very own. Rest in peace, beautiful beloved child. You are forever safe in God's loving arms. -
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