Former Ohio officer pleads not guilty to charges from deadly Kentucky crash

The officer did not have his bodycam activated during the pursuit, his former chief said.
Published: Jun. 9, 2023 at 2:11 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

RIPLEY, Ohio (WXIX) - A former Ohio police officer pleaded not guilty to all charges stemming from a deadly crash in Mason County, Kentucky.

Caleb Savage, who resigned in May from the Ripley Police Department, faces charges of reckless homicide, failure to render aid and leaving an accident scene in connection with a deadly chase, the department said in late May.

The crash happened on March 12 on KY-3056 in Maysville, Kentucky, according to the department.

The preliminary investigation found that Savage tried to stop a Dodge Charger driven by Ryan Mitchell that was suspected to be involved in a property crime, according to Kentucky State Police.

KSP confirmed that Savage drove for at least a mile from Ohio into Kentucky before turning on his emergency lights and sirens to stop the vehicle.

Troopers say that after approximately two miles on KY-3056, Mitchell lost control of his vehicle, which went off the right side of the highway and crashed. Savage continued on KY 3056 and returned to Ripley, Ohio, according to KSP. Troopers say Mitchell suffered life-threatening injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene by the Mason County Coroner’s Office.

Ripley Police Chief Corey Herron said Mitchell had been suspected in a hit-skip crash that caused property damage in Aberdeen.

Following the crash, the officer continued to work for the department. Herron said that’s because KSP did not inform him that criminal charges would be filed.

Herron said the department didn’t begin its internal investigation until Savage was indicted in May. During that investigation, Herron said they found Savage did not have his bodycam activated during the pursuit.

The police chief also said the car Savage was driving was not equipped with a dashcam. Herron said the department is implementing some changes and has received vehicles with updated technology.

After entering his not-guilty plea, state prosecutors asked for two more weeks to gather enough evidence for the case, and the judge granted their wish.

Joe Suhrue, Savage’s attorney, said he is surprised about the court’s decision to continue the hearing.

“I was a little bit surprised by it only because this matter has been being investigated for several months,” Suhrue explained. “At this point, they presented the evidence to the grand jury. One would think that they would have their evidence ready to go to the defense at the time of the arrangement.”

Savage is currently out on a $10,000 bond and is scheduled to be back in court in two weeks.

See a spelling or grammar error in our story? Please click here to report it and include the headline of the story in your email.

Do you have a photo or video of a breaking news story? Send it to us here with a brief description.