November 24, 2014


UPDATED: Three teens killed in Licking County crash

Three teenagers were killed Thursday when this Mitsubishi Diamante lost control and hit a maple tree and split in half near Alexandria, Ohio. (AP Photo/ The Columbus Dispatch, Eric Lyttle)

Three teenagers were killed Thursday when this Mitsubishi Diamante lost control and hit a maple tree and split in half near Alexandria, Ohio. (AP Photo/ The Columbus Dispatch, Eric Lyttle)

ALEXANDRIA, Ohio (AP) — Ohio State Highway Patrol accident reconstruction specialists were working Friday at the scene of a horrific high-speed crash that killed three teenagers and left two others hospitalized.

On Thursday night, residents of the village of Johnstown, east of Columbus, gathered for a candlelight vigil to remember the three teenagers who died. All were in the back seat of the 2003 Mitsubishi Diamante, which was torn in half by the high-speed crash at about 12:30 p.m. Thursday on a rural Licking County road.

The patrol said the victims were Michael Hoskinson, 17; Linzie Bell, 15; and Cheyenne Spurgeon, 15, all of Johnstown. No one in the car was wearing a seatbelt.

The driver, Jaylynn Rigio, 16, and the front-seat passenger, Ashton Cody, 16, also both of Johnstown, were taken to Columbus hospitals.

Rigio was in critical condition, and Cody was listed as stable, patrol spokesman Sgt. Russell Pasqualetti said Friday.

The Columbus Dispatch reported that the five friends were on the way to swim at a nearby Licking County creek.

The teens shouldn’t have all been in the car together. Ohio law prohibits a 16-year-old driver from transporting more than one passenger unless a parent is in the vehicle.

Pasqualetti said the patrol will work with the county prosecutor’s office to determine if any charges should be filed.

“This is a very tight-knit community,” Johnstown-Monroe schools superintendent Dale Dickson told the Dispatch. “It’s hit everybody very hard.”

  • luvmytoaster

    Wow, how very sad for all of the families involved. A 16 year old driving with 4 other passengers all 17 or younger, isn’t that against the law?
    He has taken the life of 3 individuals and his life is now ruined…..

    • Jb

      Did you ever drive over the speed limit at age 16? I’m pretty sure we all have. He and his family are going through enough they don’t need to see or hear these kinds of things. I don’t know how old you are or of you have children of your own but if you do and this was your child think about how the comments people are making would hurt you and your child. I am not condoning driving over the speed limit but I pray both survivors pull through this and the child who was driving will find peace and those impacted will offer grace knowing that is what they would need if the situation were reversed

      • golfingirl

        Well said.

    • Nick Noneya

      Jaylynn sounds like a girls name?? But today, who knows?

  • alreadyfedup1

    Sounds eerily like the Brunswick accident. When will the lawyers show up?

    • Joe Smith

      They will sue the owner of the tree

      • Bob

        The only one that needs to be sued, is the driver.

        • Joe Smith

          The parents will be the ones sued

  • Bob

    Holy crap!!! You have to be going pretty fast to have that happen to a car.

  • golfingirl

    This is a horrible tragedy for all involved.

    We can point to all the errors in judgement; excessive speed, no seat belts, too many passengers etc….probably nothing we have not all done as a teenager, but were spared the price these five paid.

    One minute, on their way for a swim on a hot summer afternoon, and in an instant, lives lost and destroyed forever.

    I cannot imagine the grief and pain these families are going through. To receive “that call” as a parent has to be unbearable.

    These types of stories are of the kind which make you hug your children tighter before bedtime. They also serve as an example to other kids about the inherent dangers of operating a motor vehicle, and the consequences of not taking that responsibility seriously. A teaching moment for all parents, and hopefully a learning moment for all children.

    All I have to offer are my prayers, which I will surely do.