Spencer County Accidents – October 5, 2020

Spencer County Sheriff’s Department

Rear-end collision

Hannah Chaney, 18, of Morgantown, KY, was southbound on SR 161 near Rockport when she began to slow down due to road construction; as she slowed, her 2013 Nissan Altima was struck from behind by a 2015 Hyundai Elantra driven by 51-year-old Melissa Maddox of Spring Hill, TN. Maddox allegedly admitted to authorities that she had looked down at her cell phone right before the crash and failed to notice that Chaney had slowed down. Chaney complained of neck pain from the crash but, after being checked out by Spencer County EMS, refused to be transported for medical treatment. Maddox, however, was transported to Owensboro Regional Health by EMS for medical evaluation after complaining of chest and knee pain from her airbags deploying. Damages in the September 25, 2:29 p.m. collision were estimated between $5,000-10,000.

Ran off road

Cody Askins, 21, of Evansville, was westbound on Base Road near Rockport when, he later told police, an eastbound vehicle caused him to swerve as he crested a hilltop, forcing him to go off the roadway; he then over-corrected, causing his 2011 Chevy Malibu to go left of center and run off the left side of the roadway. He then struck a small embankment before coming to a stop in a cornfield. Askins was not injured in the September 28, 2:20 a.m. accident, but damage to his car was estimated between $2,500-5,000.

Driver arrested for OWI

A deputy responded to a vehicle crash that occurred in Christmas Lake Village in Santa Claus at approximately 1:54 a.m. on Sunday, September 27. Upon arriving at the scene, the deputy made contact with the driver, 22-year-old Owen Ninke of Santa Claus, and determined he was intoxicated. After further investigation, it was uncovered that Ninke had crossed the center of the roadway on Balthazar Drive and struck a parked Mercedes-Benz in front of the owner’s residence. Ninke refused to be checked out by EMS and was transported to the Spencer County Law Enforcement Center on charges of operating a vehicle with an ACE of 0.15 or more; operating while intoxicated, endangering a person; and operating a vehicle with an ACE of 0.08 or more. Total damages in the crash were estimated between $25,000-50,000.

Ran off road

John McGregor, 15, of Evansville, was eastbound on CR 1060 N near Chrisney when, he later told police, he ran off the roadway due to fog; the 2019 Cadillac XT5 he was driving then struck a ditch, causing the car to roll over. During the investigation, the deputy who responded to the accident discovered McGregor had never been licensed to drive and that he had allegedly taken the vehicle without his father’s permission. After his parents arrived at the scene, McGregor was issued a criminal summons for operating a vehicle without ever receiving a license (class C misdemeanor) and criminal conversion (class A misdemeanor). McGregor refused to be checked out by EMS and was released into his parents’ custody. The Cadillac McGregor was driving sustained between $25,000-50,000 in damage in the September 26, 2:53 a.m. crash.

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