PARIS – A man indicted in a hit-and-run accident following the TD Banknorth 250 stock car race in Oxford last summer will not serve jail time if he abides by conditions.

Benjamin R. Bourassa, 34, of 1325 Franklin Road in Jay, pleaded guilty Thursday in Oxford County Superior Court to two counts of leaving the scene of an accident. A charge of driving to endanger was dropped.

Assistant District Attorney Joe O’Connor said Bourassa was driving north on Route 26 on the evening of July 21 when he struck 49-year-old Larry Sanipas of Buckfield. Bourassa contacted the Oxford Police Department the next day to say he may have hit a person.

O’Connor said Sanipas suffered a broken neck, shoulder and ankle, as well as internal injuries, including a collapsed lung. He said Sanipas recovered from the accident and did not suffer paralysis.

Justice Robert Crowley said Bourassa must abide by a set of conditions for the next year, including refraining from criminal conduct. If he does, he may withdraw his plea to the felony charge and pay a $1,500 fine on the misdemeanor.

O’Connor said Bourassa told police he had consumed three or four beers over the course of the day and smoked part of a marijuana cigarette. He did not show any signs of impairment when tested by police the day after the accident.

O’Connor said Bourassa had some minor motor vehicle infractions from the 1990s, but no infractions since 1999. He said Sanipas was intoxicated and wearing dark clothing, but was walking in the breakdown lane.

Sanipas was also struck by a car on the night of July 5, 2007, while walking on Route 4 in Auburn wearing dark clothing. No charges were filed in that incident.


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