2018-08-08 / Front Page

Lexington officer speeding before crash

BY ERIC LEVINE
810-452-2689 • elevine@mi.homepaper.com


Sandusky police have determined the Lexington police officer driving this patrol unit was speeding through the downtown intersection in Sandusky when the accident occurred on July 22. Sandusky police photo Sandusky police have determined the Lexington police officer driving this patrol unit was speeding through the downtown intersection in Sandusky when the accident occurred on July 22. Sandusky police photo The Lexington police officer critically injured when his patrol car hit a pole in Sandusky last month was speeding through the downtown intersection.

Sandusky Chief of Police Brett Lester said he reached the conclusion after the contents of the patrol vehicle’s EDR or “black box” were reviewed by his department, with assistance of the St. Clair County Sheriff’s Department which has the technology to analyze the data.

The information showed the Lexington patrol vehicle was traveling at 40 miles per hour while heading east through the intersection of Sanilac and Elk at the downtown traffic light, said Lester.

The speed limit at the location is 30 miles per hour, Lester said.

The accident occurred Sunday, July 22 at around 10 a.m. Jonoshies swerved to avoid a head-on crash with a second vehicle that was making a left turn in front of him, lost control of the patrol vehicle on wet pavement and struck the traffic light pole on the southeast corner in front of Elk Street Brewery.

The preliminary investigation showed the second vehicle, driven by Timothy Etter, 61, of Sandusky, failed to yield the right-of-way and made a left turn in front of the patrol unit.

Etter was ticketed for failing to yield, however Lester voided the ticket the following day pending the results of the EDR.

The Sandusky motorist will not be re-ticketed.

“The rule is speed cancels right-of-way,” said Lester.

He said the Lexington officer “will be marked at fault in the accident.”

Lester feels it’s important for the community to know the facts.

“I want to make sure everyone knows we’re being very transparent,” he said.

“It’s our responsibility.”

Jonoshies, who was the senior officer in charge of the Lexington Police Department, also was not wearing a seatbelt.

Lester said, “no enforcement action has been taken” on the tickets because the officer remains in the hospital.

Jonoshies remains in Ascension St. John Hospital following multiple surgeries.

A benefit for the injured officer is planned for Aug. 19 at the Lexington Fire Hall (see related story this page).

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