September 23, 2014

Medina
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Gazette publisher’s trial ends in a hung jury

AVON LAKE — The trial of Gazette Publisher George D. Hudnutt on charges stemming from a Feb. 7 crash ended in a hung jury Wednesday in Avon Lake Municipal Court.

George Hudnutt

George Hudnutt

Hudnutt, who also is chairman of the board of Lorain County Printing & Publishing Co., which publishes The Chronicle-Telegram in Elyria, was facing charges of operating a vehicle while impaired and failure to maintain assured clear distance.

Hudnutt’s Audi S4 was northbound on Lear Road when it struck the rear of a Chevrolet Blazer driven by Mary O’Shea of Avon Lake while she was stopped at a traffic light at Walker Road. O’Shea told police that Hudnutt, who later declined to take a breath test, was intoxicated and wanted to leave the scene.

Hudnutt, 56, told police he may have fallen asleep at the wheel. He said a medical condition may have led to the accident and has denied trying to leave the scene.

Avon Lake Prosecutor John Reulbach Jr. said he plans to retry the case in front of a different jury.