Some family members of a Clark County man struck and killed by a hit-and-run driver are frustrated no one has been charged in the case, but troopers said they’re working as quickly as possible on the investigation.
Hit-and run crash investigations can take a while, said Lt. Brian Aller, Springfield post commander of the Ohio State Highway Patrol. It can be difficult to collect evidence and reconstruct a crash when a vehicle leaves the scene, he said.
“This isn’t a process that takes a couple days,” He said. “It takes weeks if not months to track down all the information.”
Lawrence J. Mason, 45, of Medway, was struck and killed by a silver 2015 Dodge Durango on Sept. 6, according to a crash report from the State Highway Patrol. Mason was standing on the east shoulder of North Tecumseh Road in Bethel Twp. near U.S. 40 when he was hit, the report said, and the vehicle fled the scene.
The car was determined to be owned by Elliot J. Baggs of Springfield, according to a crash report, and had damage to the right front of the vehicle. Baggs didn’t respond to requests for comment.
Investigators want to make sure they know the full picture of what happened that night, Aller said, including the number of occupants in the car and who was driving. Multiple rumors have been spread, he said, but many also are conflicting.
“I can’t make comments as to who was driving, who was in the car, because right now we just don’t have enough information to say one way or another,” he said.
Family members of Mason are frustrated with the length of the investigation, his cousin Janet Elam said. She wants whoever is responsible to come forward.
“If somebody knows who was driving, they need to come forward and just let this be done,” she said. “Take the consequences that are going to be handed to you and deal with them. My family is dealing with this every day.”
Mason’s sister witnessed the crash, Elam said, and has been traumatized by it.
“I understand it might’ve been a freak accident,” she said. “It was an accident until they left him there.”
Aller said he wants the family to know his troopers are constantly working the case.
“We’re working as quick as we can and working diligently to try to find out exactly what happened that night … and hopefully bring some peace to the family,” he said.
The length of investigations varies depending on their complexity, Aller said.
For example, charges in connection with a separate fatal crash that happened in March were filed just last week. Wayne Crowell of Medway was charged with misdemeanor vehicular manslaughter. Troopers alleged he failed to yield when turning onto Dille Road and struck a motorcyclist.
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