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Man pleads not guilty, charged in connection with fatal ATV crash

A Medway man pleaded not guilty to a drunken driving charge Monday in connection with a fatal ATV crash.

Prosecutors will review the operating a vehicle while intoxicated charge filed against Jay Fording, 50, of 11408 Lower Valley Pike, and determine if any additional charges should be filed, Clark County Sheriff Gene Kelly said.

Terry Wilbanks, 56 of New Carlisle, died in the crash Saturday. He lived with his mother, Ethel Wilbanks, and she said he would help fix cars with Fording.

The two friends had left a pig roast they had been at together on Saturday, Ethel Wilbanks said, to go ride an all-terrain vehicle. She said she was told the two got stuck in mud, and her son got off to help push the ATV out.

Once the vehicle was freed, Terry Wilbanks jumped on the back, causing a load shift, according to Clark County Municipal Court records. The ATV then tipped, ejected Terry Wilbanks, according to the crash report, and trapping him underneath it.

Fording allegedly told investigators the men had been drinking, according to the court records.

The incident happened in a wooden area near mile marker 43 of Interstate 70 in Clark County.

Fording was booked into the Clark County Jail on Saturday and was released on bond.

Dave Patko is an avid Motocross rider, and often rides in woods near where the death occurred.

He said he has waited about a month to ride recently, because after the flooding last month, the ground was too wet.

Patko takes the trails in the woods slowly until later in the season, he said, when they are more defined and he is more comfortable with them.

“When it floods the Mad River gets so high, and it takes a long time for it to get down and the banks are super muddy,” Patko said. “I’m sure you’d have trouble getting up the banks … I’m sure it’s solid mud.”

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