Jesse Whitaker guilty in 2015 alcohol-related case

Published: Wednesday, March 18, 2015 @ 4:28 PM
Updated: Tuesday, October 13, 2015 @ 8:36 PM


            A man convicted nearly three years ago of killing three teens in a car accident was arrested Tuesday night for driving drunk, officials said Wednesday morning.

UPDATE @ 4:54 p.m. (Oct. 13): Jesse Whitaker entered a guilty plea in Fairborn Municipal Court to one count of operating a motor vehicle under the influence and one count of possession and consumption while operating a motor vehicle.

He has been sentenced as follows:

 *  Twenty-eight days in jail followed by 30 days on house arrest that includes an alcohol monitor.
 *  Three years of supervised community control to include drug and alcohol treatment and a $450 fine.
 *  The judge is allowing work release, which means Whitaker is to report to the Xenia City Jail on Oct. 28.
 *  His driver's license has been suspended for two years, retroactive to March 17 (the day of the charge).
 *  Whitaker will have no driving privileges until he shows proof of insurance.
 *  On the possession charge, the sentence is to run concurrently with his OVI conviction, plus a $100 fine.

 * Whitaker also pleaded guilty to one count of falsification.
 * Two other charges were dropped as part of the plea agreement. according to court record.

UPDATE @ 4:15 p.m. (May 5)

A judge has modified Jesse Whitaker’s bond to include requiring him to wear an alcohol monitoring device.

Fairborn Municipal Judge Beth Root gave the order during a hearing and noted that Whitaker will be required to wear the device until the court decides otherwise. If Whitaker consumes alcohol while wearing the device, he could be fined or sent to jail, according to the court.

UPDATE @ 8:58 p.m. (April 11)

A 20-year-old man convicted in a fatal crash was arrested this morning on an alcohol-related charge less than a month after he was arrested in an OVI crash.

Jesse Whitaker, 20, was arrested at 4:10 a.m. by University of Dayton police for alleged underage alcohol consumption. He was booked into the Montgomery County Jail at 4:37 a.m. and was released at 11:30 a.m., according to jail staff.

A UD spokeswoman said the university doesn’t release police reports.

Whitaker is scheduled to appear Monday in court, according to jail records.

The former Bellbrook High School student in 2012 crashed a pickup truck he was driving and killed three teen girls who were riding in his vehicle. He was 17 at the time. Speed, not alcohol, was a factor in the fatal crash that claimed his Bellbrook classmates, officials said.

Whitaker last year pleaded guilty in the vehicular manslaughter case, and was sentenced to two years probation; 300 hours of community service; and his driver’s license was suspended until he is 21.

He was arrested March 17 in Beavercreek for alleged drunken driving after he crashed his vehicle into a guardrail on the ramp from west U.S. 35 to north Interstate 675, according to Beavercreek police. Neither he nor his passenger were hurt.

He has a pretrial hearing June 1 in Fairborn Municipal Court on the misdemeanor charge of operating a vehicle while intoxicated. Also following his arrest last month, Whitaker faces misdemeanor charges of driving under suspension, failure to control, falsification for providing his brother’s birthdate and consuming alcohol under age 21, court records show.

FIRST REPORT

A man convicted nearly three years ago of killing three teens in a car accident was arrested Tuesday night, March 17, for driving drunk, officials said Wednesday morning.

Jesse Whitaker, 20, reportedly crashed his car on the ramp from westbound U.S. route 35 to Interstate 675 north, striking the guardrail. Neither he nor his passenger was injured.

Whitaker, a former Bellbrook High School student, was given a field sobriety test before he was arrested, said Beavercreek police Capt. Eric Grile, who is in charge of the crash investigation. Grile noted that Whitaker refused to take a Breathalyzer test.

In 2012, Whitaker was convicted after the pickup truck he was driving crashed and killed three teen girls who were riding in the vehicle. He was 17 at the time.

The victims, Julianna Hawk, 14; Sophie Kerrigan, 17; and Skylar Kooken, 16, were riding inside the extended cab of the pickup truck. They were traveling on Wagner Road near Oleva Drive after midnight when the vehicle crashed into a tree. Two other students were injured.

Speed, not alcohol, was a factor in the crash, officials said. Whitaker pleaded guilty in April 2014 and sentenced to two years probation, 300 hours of community service and his license was suspended until age 21.

“Obviously, it’s disturbing that anyone’s out, operating under the influence. But it happens,” Grile said. “We’re not naive enough to think that it doesn’t. We’re fortunate in this case that it was a single vehicle crash, that he didn’t hurt himself or his passenger.

“Based on his past, one would hope that he would learn some lessons from the previous crash,” Grile continued. “Obviously, his behavior last night would indicate that he has not.”

Whitaker’s 2012 case was transferred to Franklin County when he moved to Columbus.

He now faces misdemeanor charges of DUI, driving under suspension, failure to control, falsification for providing his brother’s birthdate and consuming under the age of 21.

“He does not see the severity of the actions of driving under the influence of alcohol,” said Grile. “It’s really the fact that he was driving, and after his history, that one would expect that his behavior would have changed, and it’s disappointing to find out that it did not.”

Whitaker appeared in court Wednesday, but was released on his own recognizance. His next court appearance is scheduled for March 24.

Missing cop faked his death, fled to Mexico, police say

Published: Saturday, April 29, 2017 @ 6:31 PM



Austin Police Department

A Texas police officer who was originally reported missing is believed to have attempted to fake his own death and to have fled to Mexico, officials said Friday night.

>> Read more trending news

Austin police Officer Coleman Martin, 29, is facing a Class A misdemeanor charge of “false report,” as a result.

Martin’s wife told KVUE-TV on Saturday that “Cole recently received a new prescription medication."

"The side effects were causing him to be depressed and think irrationally,” she said. “We want him to know his family loves him unconditionally and wants him home safe." 

Martin’s wife asked to remain anonymous for the interview.

An arrest affidavit for the missing officer said a woman, who was not his wife, shared an email with detectives, in which Martin wrote to her and said his plan for a staged death had been successful.

The affidavit does not say how the woman knows Martin.

Martin’s email to the woman said he had staged a scene by parking his vehicle by a body of water near the U.S. border with Mexico, the affidavit says. Then he rode a bicycle for about 8 miles to a convenience store, took a taxi to the border and rode a bus farther into Mexico, the affidavit says he said in the email.

Police obtained video footage of Martin at a gas station in Del Rio, the affidavit says. They also talked to a clerk at the gas station who had spoken to Martin. Martin told the clerk he had biked from Amistad Park to the store, the affidavit says.

Police first got involved on Tuesday night, when Martin’s wife called 911, the affidavit says. She told police that Martin had texted her a photo of a handwritten note that said he was going to drown himself in a lake near the border of Mexico. 

The next morning, officials at the Amistad National Recreation Area said they found Martin’s vehicle with a suicide note inside, the affidavit says. His wallet was also inside the vehicle, but there was no money inside it. His passport was also not in the vehicle.

In response, “a massive search operation was initiated using local, state and federal resources” on Wednesday and Thursday, the affidavit says.

The search team found an inflatable raft in the Amistad Reservoir, which is on the Rio Grande at the border between Mexico and the United States, with Martin’s name, his date of birth, date of death and his and his wife’s initials written on the side, the affidavit says. Inside the raft were remnants of a concrete block as well as scrape marks that indicated that concrete blocks had been pushed over the edge.

Investigators discovered a charge on Martin’s credit card for a new HP tablet from a Best Buy in Austin a few hours before he sent the suicide note to his wife, and the tablet was not found in his vehicle, the affidavit said. Then, investigators learned that someone had accessed Martin’s email from Mexico about five hours after he sent the suicide note text.

According to the affidavit, investigators believe Martin placed “the boat to appear he entered the water, paddled to the middle and jumped overboard with concrete blocks and ropes, and (placed) the raft on the shore to give the appearance it had drifted to shore from where the initial entry place was.”

Investigators tracked down and interviewed the unnamed woman at 4:15 p.m. Thursday.

Police: Man cuts girlfriend's betta fish in half during fight

Published: Saturday, April 29, 2017 @ 3:44 PM

betta fish Aquarian fish swims in aquarium water
NatalyaAksenova/Getty Images/iStockphoto

A domestic dispute in Connecticut ended with significant property damage, including a woman's betta fish being cut in half.

>> Read more trending news

The incident took place Thursday, according to the New Britain Herald. Police responded to a domestic disturbance call, where a woman, who was not identified, said her boyfriend, Juan Vega, 33, showed up at her home unexpectedly and began arguing with her. During the argument, the woman claims Vega pushed her. He also kicked a TV, breaking it, and cut a betta fish in half, police noted.

Vega gathered his belongings and left the premises, according to the police report.

Police tracked down Vega, who was arrested and charged with cruelty to animals and second-degree breach of peace, according to the New Britain Herald. Police said Vega admitted to damaging property and killing his girlfriend's fish.

Police: Florida man’s fight with girlfriend causes neighborhood power outage

Published: Saturday, April 29, 2017 @ 3:09 PM

Milian
Miami Dade County Sheriff's Office

A man in Hialeah who got into an argument with his girlfriend ended up causing a power outage in the neighborhood, police said. 

The outage happened when Angel Milian, 18, set his girlfriend’s purse on fire and threw it over a gate at his house, WPLG reports.

>> Read more trending news

Florida man accused of killing roommate’s baby 

Firefighters said the purse set a $3,000 palm tree on fire, and the flames spread to a Florida Power & Light electrical box, according to WPLG. 

Hialeah police arrested Milian when the girlfriend showed officers a recorded video of him lighting her purse on fire. He was taken to the county jail and faces a second-degree charge of arson. 

Read more at local10.com.

Deputies: Boy dies after drunken driver strikes 5 children walking home from bus stop

Published: Friday, April 28, 2017 @ 1:21 PM

A 13-year-boy died Friday after he and four other children were struck by a drunken driver while they walked home from a bus stop Thursday in Florida, the Polk County Sheriff's Office said.

>> Read more trending news

John Camfield, 48, of Davenport, was driving his Kia Rio on Allegheny Road near Athabasca Drive at about 5 p.m. Thursday when witnesses said he leaned forward and left the road, hitting five Dundee Ridge Middle Academy students who were walking on a shoulder of the road, Sheriff Grady Judd said.

Judd said Camfield sideswiped Jonte Robinson, 15, Jasmine Robertson, 14, and Rylan Pryce, 12, before striking Jahiem Robertson and Juan Mena, both 13.

Deputies said Jahiem Robertson and Juan Mena were flown to Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children in Orlando with life-threatening spinal, facial and head injuries.

Investigators said Jahiem Robertson died Friday. Mena remains hospitalized with orbital fractures, but he is expected to survive, Judd said.

Witnesses said Camfield traveled back onto the road after hitting the children, slowed and then sped off before rear-ending a pregnant woman in a Nissan Murano on Poinciana Parkway, deputies said. Investigators said the woman wasn't seriously injured.

Deputy Jonathan Quintana, 30, who lives nearby, arrested Camfield after being notified of the crash, officials said. He was off duty at the time.

Judd said Camfield spent 18 years in law enforcement in Mississippi.

Deputies said Camfield was previously employed by: the Yolobusha County Sheriff's Office, the Tunica County Sheriff's Office, the Oxford Police Department and the Hernando Police Department, all in Mississippi.

Camfield is charged with two counts of driving under the influence with serious bodily injury, two counts of leaving the scene of a crash with serious bodily injury, two counts of leaving the scene of a crash with bodily injury, three counts of driving under the influence with injury and property damage and reckless driving.

Camfield is scheduled to face a judge at 1 p.m. Friday.