September 23, 2014

Medina
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Man who said car was stolen convicted of crashing it himself

MEDINA — A 54-year-old Elyria man accused of crashing his vehicle while intoxicated was found guilty Wednesday.

Mark S. McCraw’s trial began Monday. He was charged with two counts of driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, fourth- and fifth-degree felonies because he’s had five or more similar convictions in two decades.

Medina County Common Pleas Judge James L. Kimbler scheduled McCraw for a Jan. 2 sentencing hearing. McCraw could spend 1½ years or more in prison.

McCraw was picked up by county sheriff’s deputies April 1, according to court documents.

Deputy Brady England responded to a one-car crash in a ditch on Ridge Road in Sharon Township just before 6 p.m. He identified the vehicle as McCraw’s, but McCraw was not present.

“There were witnesses at the scene,” the documents read, “who told Mr. England that the driver of the car, a man, had left the car following the accident and was seen with a dog walking toward a nearby veterinary hospital.”

About 10 minutes later, after finding the veterinary hospital was closed, England spotted McCraw walking with a dog on Wolf Creek Drive — a dead-end road about a quarter-mile away from the crash.

“Mr. McCraw told him that he was walking from Wadsworth to Elyria and that someone had stolen his car while he was in Wadsworth,” the documents read.

England transported McCraw back to the scene of the crash, where they were met by Ohio Highway Patrol Trooper Jermaine Camper.
The documents indicated Camper thought McCraw might be intoxicated.

“He first noticed an odor of an alcoholic beverage about Mr. McCraw’s person,” documents read. “He noted that his eyes were bloodshot and that his speech seemed slightly slurred.”

After performing field sobriety tests, Camper, who believed McCraw was intoxicated and had driven his vehicle into the ditch, arrested him, according to the documents.

Contact reporter Nick Glunt at (330) 721-4048 or nglunt@medina-gazette.com.