TOWANDA - The Towanda man who was driving an SUV last week in the borough that traveled down a steep river bank and landed partially in the water now faces a felony charge.

Michael Lee Bormann, 23, was charged Wednesday with the third-degree felony of "accidents involving death or personal injury while not property licensed," Towanda police said.

The charge was filed because Bormann was seriously injured in the accident, at a time when his driver's license had been suspended, Towanda Police Sgt. David Lantz explained.

In addition, Bormann was cited for several motor vehicle code violations in connection with the crash, including driving at an unsafe speed, driving without insurance, reckless driving and driving with a suspended license, Lantz said.

There is also a warrant out of the state of Texas for Bormann's arrest on a fraud charge, Lantz said.

However, due to the long distance between Bradford County and Texas, Bormann won't be extradited to the Lone Star State to face the fraud charge, Lantz said.

Bormann was driving a 1996 Chevrolet Blazer SUV north on the Merrill Parkway at approximately 6 p.m. on Sept. 27 when it went off the east side of the roadway, crossed the Towanda-Monroeton rail line, crashed through a metal fence and traveled down the river bank, Towanda police said. Bormann's SUV traveled approximately 60 to 70 feet down the steep river bank before it came to rest right-side up, partially in the river, police said.

Bormann was transported by ambulance to Memorial Hospital in Towanda, where he was transferred to an emergency medical helicopter, which flew him to Robert Packer Hospital in Sayre.

Bormann was initially listed in fair condition at Robert Packer Hospital, and was later released from the hospital.

Bormann was arraigned by Towanda Magisterial District Judge Timothy Clark on Wednesday. Bormann was then sent to the Bradford County jail in lieu of $25,000 bail.

Bormann is scheduled to appear before Judge Clark on Oct. 10 for a preliminary hearing.

Restitution for damages will be sought from Bormann for the victim, which is Towanda Borough, according to the Towanda police.

James Loewensten can be reached at (570) 265-1633; or email: jloewenstein@thedailyreview.com