Pitcairn man sentenced in fatal hit-and-run

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The family of a bicyclist killed in Point Breeze last year said the prison sentence the driver negotiated for himself Tuesday was too lenient, but they are relieved they won't revisit the horrors of that July day in yet another courtroom.

"I thought it should be more, too, because he killed my son," said James Price Jr.'s mother, Glenice. "He'll still be there. My son is gone."

Jeffrey M. McClure Jr., 29, of Pitcairn was sentenced to up to five years in prison in the July 25 hit-and-run death.

He pleaded guilty Tuesday to one felony count in each of the accidents involving death or personal injury and accidents involving death or personal injury while not properly licensed. The plea was part of an agreement in which the Allegheny County district attorney's office agreed to Mr. McClure serving between 2 1/2 and 5 years.

He was also sentenced to eight years' probation, according to the district attorney's office.

At the sentencing Tuesday, Mr. Price's sister, Rochelle Jackson, wore a T-shirt with her brother's photo and a heart-shaped pendant with his image on one side and her brother, Kevin, on the other. He died of cancer in 2004.

Ms. Jackson was practical about the punishment and tried to understand what happened when Mr. McClure hit her brother then drove away that summer morning.

"We can't give him anymore than the law allowed," she said.

"All he had to do was stop. I'm sure he didn't mean to hit him."

She and her father, James Price Sr., who also attended the sentencing, said Mr. McClure, a married father of two young daughters, seemed remorseful and apologized to the family.

"I've forgiven him," James Price Sr. said.

Police said Mr. McClure, a recovering drug addict, was driving with a suspended driver's license when he fatally struck Mr. Price, 46, of Homewood in the 7400 block of Penn Avenue. Police said he also was speeding.

Mr. McClure drove away, according to a police affidavit, but was found two weeks later. He initially told homicide detectives that a motorcycle struck his vehicle and caused him to hit a guard rail or tree, damaging his car, according to the affidavit.

He admitted later that he actually hit a bicyclist while changing lanes after detectives told him no evidence existed to support his initial story, according to the affidavit.

Mr. Price is also survived by an 11-year-old daughter, who lives in California, his family said.

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Molly Born: mborn@post-gazette.com, 412-263-1944 or on Twitter @borntolede.


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