A former Philadelphia police officer pleaded guilty Wednesday to driving at least 70 mph while drunk last year and crashing through the front of a Northeast Philadelphia home, leaving the homeowner — who was watching TV on her couch with her husband — pinned under the car in her living room, and killing the couple’s two dogs.
Gregory Campbell, 28, said little as he pleaded guilty before Common Pleas Court Judge Zachary Shaffer to charges including aggravated assault by vehicle while driving under the influence. He is expected to be sentenced in June and could face years behind bars.
District Attorney Larry Krasner said in a statement that Campbell’s conviction offered a measure of accountability, but noted that the consequences of Campbell’s actions will live on for the victims.
“In one night of reckless and dangerous behavior, Gregory Campbell inflicted terrible injury” on the couple, Krasner said.
Campbell’s attorney, Steven Patton, said afterward: “From the beginning, Mr. Campbell has taken responsibility, and his thoughts continue to be” with the victims, Anna and Raymond Wakeman.
Prosecutors said Campbell had been drinking for hours on Feb. 6, 2021, ending his night at the bar of the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 5 headquarters in Northeast Philadelphia.
After he left, around 8:20 p.m., prosecutors said, he was driving at least 70 mph and with a blood alcohol level of .20 — more than twice the legal limit — when he drove through a stop sign and crashed into the Wakemans’ home on the 2800 block of Comly Road, not far from the union bar.
Anna Wakeman was dragged and pinned under Campbell’s Dodge Dart, causing serious injuries to her legs, ribs, lungs, and more, while Raymond was sent flying across the room, the couple said in a civil suit they later filed against Campbell and the bars that they say served him that night.
The couple’s two dogs died of injuries from the crash, the suit said, and there was significant damage to the home.
Anna Wakeman had to undergo several surgeries, prosecutors said. She declined to comment on Campbell’s plea.
Campbell, an officer for two years, was fired by Commissioner Danielle Outlaw.
The Wakemans’ lawsuit against him remains pending. Their civil attorney, Jim Waldenberger, said he was “happy to see that justice is being served in the criminal courts. Now justice will be served in the civil courts.”