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Brandon Lee Crowe faces rare felony charge


A Westmoreland County man is scheduled for a preliminary hearing today on felony charges that he helped a woman take her own life. 


31-year-old Brandon Lee Crowe of Arnold is charged with a second degree felony count of causing or aiding in the suicide of 39-year-old Julie Madeley of Climax Road in West Wheatfield Township in March.  He’s also charged with felony attempted theft and seven misdemeanors, including terroristic threats against a state trooper. 


District Attorney Pat Dougherty said when filing the charges last month that the crime of aiding a suicide is rarely used, but it “fits this case.”  Crowe twice hindered polcie efforts to get to Madeley before finally relenting, and police say that as she lay dying, he stole items from her home, including taking jewelry from her body as she lay unconscious.


If convicted for both felonies, he could be sentenced to as much as 20 years in prison and fines totaling $50,000.  Crowe is due before Judge Thachik at 1:15 this afternoon.

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