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OSP: Impairment suspected in fatal crash

Published: Saturday, October 11, 2014 @ 4:07 PM
Updated: Monday, October 13, 2014 @ 6:45 PM

UPDATE @ 6:23 p.m. (Oct. 13, 2014) : The driver of an SUV that hit another passenger vehicle carrying a grandfather and granddaughter, killing them both, is being investigated for possible criminal charges, an OSP commander said Monday.

Lewis Chambers Sr., 54, was possibly intoxicated and has been arrested on DUI charges in the past, Lt. Brian Aller, Ohio State Patrol Springfield Post commander, told News Center 7's Allison Wichie.

"We did collect samples from him to determine if he was impaired or not," Aller said. "We do suspect there was some impairment, whether it be alcohol or drug related."

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Aller also noted that Chambers did not have his driver's license at the time of the collision.

Chambers declined comment to Wichie on the advice of his attorney.

A makeshift memorial has been set up at the scene of the accident where 12-year-old Sophia Gruber and her grandfather, 65-year-old Richard Gruber, were killed.

Gruber's 10-year-old sister was listed Monday in serious condition.

UPDATE @ 7:20 p.m. (Oct. 12, 2014) Grief counselors and local pastors on Monday will be at Indian Valley Middle School, where 12-year-old Sophia Gruber was a sixth-grader.

The Greenon Local School District posted a statement Sunday evening on its Facebook page:

"The Greenon family is deeply saddened by the loss of one of our students, sixth-grader Sophia Gruber, and the injury of her younger sister, Olivia, in a car crash Saturday afternoon. Sophia will be dearly missed at Indian Valley and we extend our thoughts and prayers to Olivia and all of their family and friends."

UPDATE @ 5 p.m. (Oct. 12, 2014) A 10-year-old girl remains at Dayton Children's Hospital today after she was airlifted from a crash Saturday afternoon that killed her 12-year-old sister and grandfather.

Olivia Gruber was a patient at Dayton Children's, but her condition was not being released.

Her grandmother, Brinda Gruber, who also was injured in the crash, has been released from Miami Valley Hospital.

Lewis Chambers, the driver of the Ford Explorer that struck the Grubers' car, also has been released from the hospital.

The Ohio State Highway Patrol's Springfield Post is still investigating the crash, and no charges have been filed against Chambers, troopers said.

UPDATE @ 10:54 p.m. (Oct. 11, 2014) Alcohol is a factor in a two-car crash Saturday afternoon that killed a Springfield grandfather and granddaughter.

Richard Gruber, 65, and his 12-year-old granddaughter, Sophia Gruber, were both pronounced dead at the scene. A second granddaughter, Olivia Gruber, who is Sophia's younger sister, was taken by CareFlight from the scene and is at Dayton Children's Hospital, said Sgt. Merrill Thompson of the Ohio State Highway Patrol's Springfield Post.

Lewis E. Chambers, 54, of Springfield, was driving a 2004 Ford Explorer north on Dayton-Springfield Road at 3:36 p.m. when he rear-ended a 1999 Ford Taurus driven by Brinda Gruber, 56, Thompson said.

The Grubers, all of Springfield, had stopped to turn west onto South Tecumseh Road at the time of the crash, which shut down Dayton-Springfield Road for four hours.

Brinda Gruber, wife of Richard Gruber and grandmother of the two girls, was taken to Miami Valley Hospital in Dayton with injuries not believed to be life-threatening, troopers said.

Chambers was taken to Soin Medical Center in Beavercreek. His injuries also were not life-threatening.

"Alcohol is a factor," said Thompson, who added that the fatal crash remains under investigation.

Troopers were assisted at the scene by the Clark County Sheriff's Office and Mad River Fire and EMS.

UPDATE @ 8:10 p.m. (Oct. 11, 2014) A man and child were killed and three others injured in a two-vehicle crash Saturday afternoon at South Tecumseh and Dayton-Springfield roads.

A car with four occupants was traveling north on Dayton-Springfield Road around 3:30 p.m. when the car stopped to turn west on South Tecumseh Road. A man driving a sport utility vehicle then rear-ended the car, killing two people inside, according to the Ohio State Highway Patrol's Springfield Post.

A second child in the car was airlifted from the scene and is now at Dayton Children's Hospital. A woman in the car and the SUV driver were both taken to Soin Medical Center in Beavercreek, the patrol said.

No names or conditions have been released in the Clark County crash.

Alcohol has not been ruled out as a possible factor, according to the highway patrol.

UPDATE @ 7:24 p.m. (Oct. 11, 2014): A serious crash this afternoon has turned deadly.

At least one person was killed in the crash reported after 3:30 p.m. at the intersection of South Tecumseh and Dayton-Springfield roads.

The Clark County Coroner's Office has been called to the fatal crash, and troopers from the Springfield Post of the Ohio State Highway Patrol remain on scene investigating.

CareFlight took at least one crash victim from the scene.

It is not known how many people were involved in the collision, nor what led to the crash. No names have been released.

We are on scene and will update this report as we learn details.

FIRST REPORT (Oct. 11, 2014)

CareFlight was called this afternoon to a two-vehicle crash at South Tecumseh and Dayton roads.

The vehicles sustained heavy damage in the crash reported shortly after 3:30 p.m.

One person had to be extricated from a vehicle, and at least two people suffered injuries.

We will update this report as we learn additional information.