Michael McFarland surrenders after fatal New Russia crash, charged with vehicular homicide

Staff Report

A Vermilion man was charged Wednesday with aggravated vehicular homicide, a third-degree felony, in connection to a deadly Aug. 21 crash in New Russia Township.

Michael McFarland, 43, also faces misdemeanor counts of texting while driving, reckless operation, and failure to maintain an assured clear distance.

He turned himself in on an arrest warrant and is being held at the Lorain County Jail.

McFarland is accused of causing a three-car crash on US 20 that killed 48-year-old Hubert Vaughan of Elyria.

According to the Ohio State Highway Patrol, he was texting behind the wheel around 3:29 p.m. that day when he struck Tami Ford, 53, of Elyria, whose Jeep Compass was pushed into another lane, striking Vaughan’s Ford Focus.

Vaughan went off the side of the road and crashed. After being extricated from the car by Wellington firefighters, he was pronounced dead on the scene.

Both Vaughan and Ford had been wearing seat belts, state troopers said.

Ford suffered only minor injuries.

Firefighters also cut McFarland from his vehicle and he was flown to MetroHealth Medical Center in Cleveland with incapacitating injuries.

In a preliminary hearing Wednesday at Oberlin Municipal Court, McFarland pleaded not guilty to the misdemeanor charges.

Staff Report