UPDATED: Fiery, fatal crash in Bellevue

UPDATED WITH 911 CALL: Driver clocked at high speeds moments before crash that killed woman, injured others.
Jessica Cuffman
Sep 19, 2013
A fiery crash in downtown Bellevue Tuesday night left a mother dead and four others in serious condition at Toledo hospitals, Ohio State Highway Patrol troopers said.

Tracy Albright, 36, of Bellevue, was pronounced dead at the scene, troopers said.

Morgan Jevec, 24, of Massillon, is accused of causing the threevehicle crash at East Main and North Sandusky streets.   He remains at Mercy St. Vincent Medical Center in Toledo, where he was flown by medical helicopter shortly after the crash.

Three passengers in his vehicle, all from Canton, were also flown to Toledo hospitals after suffering serious injuries. Christopher Watters, 48, and Ricky Treherne Jr., 32, were also flown to Mercy St. Vincent Medical Center, while Steven Gresser, 31, was flown to the Toledo Hospital.

The driver of a third vehicle involved in the crash — Travis Roach, 54, of Bellevue — was treated at the scene and released.

At about 11:07 p.m., a caller alerted Huron County dispatchers to a Mercury Grand Marquis driving recklessly as it headed west on U.S. 20, from Monroeville, Bellevue police Chief Dennis Brandal said.

Listen to the 911 call in the player below

Brandal’s officers began to station their cruisers on the east side of Bellevue in hopes of intercepting the vehicle, but within three minutes of the first call, a Bellevue officer crossed paths with the Grand Marquis at U.S. 20 and Prairie Road, police said.

The officer — Brandal did not release his name — clocked the vehicle at almost 80 mph. The officer flicked on his cruiser’s emergency lights and siren and began to pursue the vehicle. It’s unclear if the officer’s cruiser ever caught up to the vehicle, as a statement from Brandal did not explain this in detail.

What is known: About 1.5 miles away, and about 120 seconds later, the incident ended in tragedy.

At 11:11 p.m., at North Sandusky and East Main streets, the Grand Marquis slammed into the rear of Albright’s Chevy Blazer, which was stopped at a traffic light. The Blazer continued through the intersection until coming to rest on the north side of Main Street. Albright was the Blazer’s only occupant.

The Grand Marquis, driven by Jevec, then continued through the intersection and struck Roach’s Buick Lacrosse, which was stopped in a turn lane, Brandal said.

The Blazer and the Grand Marquis burst into flames.

Bellevue resident John Shumake said he was about half a mile away when he heard the police sirens and then the boom from the crash.

“It was backwards,” he said while revisiting the scene Wednesday.

He and dozens of other Bellevue residents descended on the chaotic scene after hearing the police scanner traffic and the sirens. As emergency vehicles flooded the area, medical helicopters landed at the junior high parking lot nearby. Bellevue firefighters extinguished the vehicle fires, but Albright was soon pronounced dead.

Sharon Francis, 32, said she went to the scene as soon as she heard the helicopters landing. She feared someone she knew might be involved in the crash.

“There was glass and tires and smoke everywhere,” she said Wednesday morning, also revisiting the scene. In her arms she held her 10-month-old daughter, Savannah, as she placed flowers along the blackened roadway.

Jevec and the three passengers in his vehicle were not wearing seat belts, authorities said, and it’s unknown if drugs or alcohol were factors in the crash.

Terri Norman, of Bellevue, said she didn’t learn until Wednesday morning that Albright — her friend and co-worker of four years — was dead.

“She was the life of the party,” Norman said. “She was just so funny and outgoing.”

Albright worked as a housekeeper at The Willows at Bellevue, where she strived to make the residents laugh, if only to make their days a little better, Norman said.

Norman said she last crossed paths with Albright earlier Tuesday night, when she was leaving a football game. Albright had attended the game because a co-worker’s son was playing, Norman said.

“That’s just the kind of person she was,” she said. “She was more like a sister than a friend. A really sweet girl.”

Albright was the mother of a teenage son, Norman said.

Huron County dispatchers fielded multiple 911 calls Tuesday night about the Grand Marquis driving recklessly. County dispatchers refused to release recordings of the 911 calls without approval from their supervisors, who on Wednesday did not return multiple phone messages from a reporter.

The Register has also submitted a public records request to Bellevue Police Department, seeking recordings of the police scanner traffic from late Tuesday night.

Criminals charges in the crash have not been filed, troopers said.

Jevec has been cited for traffic violations three times since November — once for a seat belt violation; once for operating without reasonable control; and once for speeding, when he was driving 46 mph in a 25 mph zone, according to Massillon Municipal Court records.

Comments

starryeyes83

Amen! People have got to stop pulling the judging / karma card. That theory doesn't wash clean anymore.

Every driver out there has a right to judge, ponder, make their opinions known. It's these kind of lowlifes who put other people at risk. It's too bad he didn't slam the car into the subway before he reached this lady.

This lady DID nothing wrong! She was STOPPED at the light.

Tell me is that "karma"? I don't think so. Tired of all the bleeding hearts.

How about Charles Manson? he's still alive. People are paying to keep him alive. That's NOT justice. He should have been fried years ago. But , Cali overturned the death penalty at the time.

And that's an abomination!

starryeyes83

Thank you to the callers and the cops.

Sadly, there was nothing that could have been done at that point. It's was already a tragic fate set.

uaintreedy

My cousin was a passanger and was not driving. Blame the driver not the people riding in the car. He was drunk amd was fleeing the cops due to his legal problems and out of four he walked away clean. Others are facing many issues from the driver.

ladydye_5

Fleeing what cops? He was driving like a mad man out of Monroeville....NOONE was chasing him then? Someone called the police outside of Monroeville. The police never caught up to them till it was TOO LATE. NOONE was chasing them. There was NO FLEEING the cops. He may have been drunk, he may have legal problems, but the cops were NOT involved till Bellevue 30 seconds BEFORE the crash. Please explain WHO was he fleeing?

Cupcake_1

@uaintreedy,
Your cousin and the others are just as guilty to blame as the driver. If he was drunk, why did they get in the car with him? Why didn't they try to keep him from driving? Why didn't they call the cops? He was not being chased. Another driver that this guy blew by had the decency to call the cops. At that point he was not being pursued. If there are any innocent victims here, it is Tracy Albright! SHE WAS SITTING AT A FREAKIN' STOPLIGHT WHEN SHE WAS HIT BY THIS CLOWN!!!! At the rate of speed she was hit, she never had a chance. One can only pray that the impact killed her before the fire did. At least your cousin and the others lived and you are able to hug them and tell them how much you love them. Tracy's family didn't even have a chance to look at her one last time, her body was so badly burnt. Her children will never again feel her arms around them as she hugs them or hear her say "I love you". I feel NO, ZERO sympathy for anyone other than the friends and family of Tracy.

ladydye_5

Agree with you Cupcake....why did the others not STOP the driver if he was drunk? Take the keys? Call the cops themselves? Heck let the air out of the tires? Anything. Don't get in the car. There was NO FLEEING. The cops were NOT chasing this car till 30 seconds before the crash. Your BS story is not going to fly with anyone on this blog, sorry. Somewhere I saw where this "cousin" said they were working here in the area???? WHERE? Who were these jokers working for? I'd like to know? Who would hire these jokers and there prior rap sheets?

uaintreedy

If your child was in the car and put in the same place how would you feel. I bet you all are perfect and never had a beer and drove. Even one impares your ability. He was roofing for a company and works 60-70 hours a week. Has kids he supports as do the others. Bad choices and bad circumstances yes but I see you all are saints. My cousin had no criminal record and was not a licensed driver. I think all families are effected but I do hope tge driver rots. He has good reason to. Rick treherne was just an average guy working for pennies trying to make a living and had no cell phone to call. These jokers are all licensed roofers that do schools, gov. Buildings and residential houses. If you judge your no better than the next person. No sympathy is needed but judgement is not needed as well.

ladydye_5

NO, I do not have a beer and DRIVE. Your cousin still got in the car. He ALLOWED THE DRIVER TO DRIVE DRUNK. He could have TOOK THE KEYS. HE could have made a difference!

Cupcake_1

I am far from a saint, but I'm also not stupid or selfish enough to put others at risk. I have never gotten behind the wheel of a car drunk and I wouldnt get in a car, bus, boat, tractor....with someone I even thought was drinking. I'm curious to know....if they were simply roofers, working hard to make money, what on earth were they doing out so late in the evening, seemingly up to no good? I know a lot of roofers and generally their work is done at sundown. ???? Again, your cousin had a choice to get in that car and put his life at risk. I get so sick and tired of hearing the excuse a person has had a hard life or it was their situation in life that put them in a bad position. I say bull@#$&! I get your cousin was working and trying to support a family, but he also made a CHOICE to do something stupid. Yes, the driver bears the brunt of the responsibility, but all the passengers in that car are in some way to blame for Tracys death. Instead of even TRYING to stop this jerk from driving they went along with him. And let me tell you. Tracy was a hard-working, loving person. She has a family, including three beautiful children, who loved her more than anything on this earth. I attended her funeral yesterday. It was one of the saddest things I've done in my lifetime. The emptiness and pain in her families eyes....so heartbreaking. The next time you visit your cousin and are able to hug him and tell him you love him, I want you to picture three innocent children who will never again be able to have the same opportunity with their mother! I hope your cousin physically recovers from this, but I also hope that he in some way is held responsible for his actions in this whole horrible situation.

uaintreedy

If you get in a bus and tge driver was drunk and you wrecked killing someone then you should be guilty for not stopping the driver?

ladydye_5

I would NOT get on a bus where I knew the driver was DRUNK. Sorry. And I would take the keys. Save other peoples lives.

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