Driver in crash gets 3-year sen­tence

Dayton Daily News - - LOCAL & STATE -

A Colum­bus man was sen­tenced Thurs­day to three years in prison for reck­lessly caus­ing a crash that killed one per­son and se­ri­ously in­jured another on New Year’s Eve 2015.

The Colum­bus Dis­patch re­ports Daniel P. Merz, 24, pleaded guilty in Au­gust to ag­gra­vated ve­hic­u­lar homi­cide in the death of Bran­don J. Sega, 25, and ve­hic­u­lar as­sault for in­juries to Ja­son Lon­ne­mann, 24.

The sen­tence was im­posed by Franklin County Com­mon Pleas Judge Guy Reece, who also sus­pended Merz’s driver’s li­cense for life and fined him $10,000. Merz will serve five years of pro­ba­tion when he is re­leased from prison.

Merz was speed­ing as he drove north on River­side Drive and ran a red light at Not­ting­ham Road, col­lid­ing with a Toy­ota Camry about 9:15 p.m. Dec. 31, 2015. Lon­ne­mann was driv­ing the Camry and Sega was a back­seat pas­sen­ger.

Data re­cov­ered from Merz’s car showed that he was driv­ing 78 mph be­fore the crash. No al­co­hol or il­le­gal drugs were found in his sys­tem, but psy­chol­o­gists found that Merz suf­fered from se­vere men­tal ill­ness and hadn’t been tak­ing his med­i­ca­tion.

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