November 20, 2014


Middle Avenue crash victims improving in the hospital

CARLISLE TWP. — Three teenagers critically injured when the vehicle they were in crashed into a building Saturday are recovering.

Teens, in what police say was a stolen Chrysler PT Cruiser, went over this railroad crossing on Middle Avenue before the vehicle crashed Saturday. (CT photo by Bruce Bishop.)

Driver Isiah McKibben, 17, of Lorain, was listed in fair condition at MetroHealth Medical Center in Cleveland on Monday night. Passenger Shawn Gamble, 14, of Elyria, was listed in serious condition, while passenger Charlie Rivera, 15, of Elyria, was in good condition.

Another passenger, Eric Redondo, 15, of Elyria, suffered non-life-threatening injuries and was transported to EMH Medical Center in Elyria after the crash.

Repairs also are being made to the NiSource natural gas transmission building on Middle Avenue into which police say McKibben crashed a stolen Chrysler PT Cruiser.

McKibben lost control heading over an elevated railroad crossing, struck a ditch and fence and then went through the cinder-block NiSource building that houses Columbia Gas transmission lines, according to a press release from the Ohio Highway Patrol’s Elyria post.

Sgt. Paul March, a supervisor with the Elyria post, said the PT Cruiser was reported stolen in Elyria around 9 a.m. Saturday.

Columbia Gas of Ohio spokeswoman Amy Koncelik said the crash caused no outages or interruptions to customers but did substantial damage to the building on Middle Avenue, north of Butternut Ridge Road.

The PT Cruiser struck natural gas lines, causing a severe leak. Emergency workers were unable to reach three of the teens until officials deemed the area safe, but Koncelik said residents weren’t endangered.

“There was no need to evacuate,” she said. “Our crews were on the scene the entire time.”

Koncelik said she is not sure how long repairs to the building will take, but the pipes have been repaired and are operating as usual.

Elyria police Lt. Andy Eichenlaub said charges have not yet been filed against McKibben or the passengers.

Reporter Evan Goodenow contributed to this story. Contact Chelsea Miller at 329-7123 or

  • Isaiah McKibben

    I was not the driver of that pt. curser and I would really appreciate if you can change that to the right facts because if I don’t recall I was in the back seat when the cops got me out of the car and my name is not spelled isiah its spelled Isaiah please get ur facts strait before u post some bulshit on the internet. Isaiah McKibben

    • Joe Smith

      Stay out of stolen cars and you wont have to worry about it.
      You should be embarrassed instead of worrying about how your name is spelled in an article that involves stealing a car, you guys could have killed somebody for crying out loud.
      What if that gas line ignited genius?

      • Otter

        Complaining about the name spelling….coming from someone who was in a stolen “pt curser”…who wants the facts “strait”. Gotta love it.

        • Joe Smith


    • brenda

      How can you be upset about the spelling of your name? Did you know that there was also another crash there where some other teenagers were killed in the same area because they were speeding. This happened years ago. For you to not care about anything but the spelling of your name, it was senseless, those children and others could have been killed! You were the oldest in the car you should have stopped it IF you were not driving!

      • Isaiah McKibben

        I was under the influence and I didn’t even know that they were younger than me till after everything happened and Im not saying that me being under influence was an excuse im just saying I was messed up that night n its not that im upset about the spelling of my name cuz im not im upset that I was accused of being the driver when I wasn’t the driver just because I was the oldest doesn’t mean that I put those three boys in danger cuz I didn’t n I will never put someones life in danger that’s why im upset that I was the accused driver.

        • Isaiah McKibben

          and its proven that I was not the driver so that IF shouldn’t be there

          • brenda

            Like I said IF you were not driving honey who was? No you didn’t put them in the car but you should have been the responsible one. I’m not trying to be mean or beat up on you, but to be that messed up not to know who you’re riding with, that’s not looking good for you.