The family of a man struck and killed in a hit-and-run crash on North Tecumseh Road more than a year ago says they want justice and are relieved an arrest has been made in the case.
Kristine Baggs, a Kenton Ridge High School teacher, was arrested Monday and charged with failure to stop after an accident, tampering with evidence and two counts of vehicular manslaughter, according to the Clark County Common Pleas Court website. She’s expected to be arraigned Wednesday.
Lawrence “Larry” Mason, 45, of Medway was standing on the side of North Tecumseh Road when he was struck and killed by a silver 2015 Dodge Durango in September 2016, according to an Ohio State Highway Patrol crash report. The vehicle and driver left the scene, according to investigators.
A phone call to the Baggs’ home Tuesday wasn’t returned.
“I’m hoping the family may have some justice for their loved one with Ms. Baggs going to jail for this indictment and charges,” said Lt. Brian Aller, commander of the Ohio State Highway Patrol’s Springfield post.
The arrest prompts a lot of emotions, said Janet Elam, Mason’s cousin. The family has wanted to see the case prosecuted.
“Justice for Larry is all we are asking,” she said. “We want her to serve her time and we will go from there.”
Mourning is easier knowing an arrest has been made, Elam said. Her message to Baggs on Tuesday was that if she struck Mason as prosecutors allege, she should have stopped to check him.
“It was an accident until you left him there to lay on the side of the road,” she said.
The Ohio State Attorney’s General Office is prosecuting the case. A spokesman said prosecutors don’t comment on cases so soon after indictments. Clark County Prosecutor Andy Wilson said his office is unable to prosecute because of a conflict of interest.
“They have been handling the investigation from the time that the Baggs were determined to suspects,” Wilson said.
According to public records obtained during the Springfield News-Sun payroll project, Baggs made a little more than $52,000 last year. As of Tuesday afternoon, she hadn’t been placed on leave.
Northeastern Superintendent John Kronour said he couldn’t comment until he knows more about the situation and talks to her.
The Springfield News-Sun has covered the fatal accident that killed Lawrence J. Mason since September 2016 and will continue to follow the case throughout the legal process.