Columbus man facing 13th OVI charge after single-vehicle crash kills wife

Ohio Headlines

COLUMBUS (WCMH) — A 53-year-old Columbus man is facing aggravated vehicular homicide charges and his 13th operating a vehicle under the influence charge after a single-vehicle crash that resulted in the death of his 51-year-old wife.

Robert Ellis, who the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office described as a “habitual drunk driver” who has a total of 36 past driving suspensions with one of them still being an active suspension, was indicted on Dec. 2 with four different charges in connection to the fatal crash on Oct. 16 in Prairie Township.

“While investigating this fatal traffic crash it was very clear to investigators that Mr. Ellis is one of the worst habitual repeat offenders of drunk driving we have seen. He has no regard for human life continuing to be an extreme danger to the motoring public due to his criminal behavior of operating vehicles while impaired. It is further evident in this case in which he caused the death of his wife while having a blood alcohol of .185, which is more than double the legal limit,” Franklin County Sheriff Dallas Baldwin said.


The charges include aggravated vehicular homicide, a first-degree felony, aggravated vehicular homicide, a second-degree felony, operating a vehicle under the influence, a third-degree felony, and another operating a vehicle under the influence, a third-degree felony, for being a repeat offender, according to a press release.

The crash occurred at 4:48 p.m. when Ellis was driving was traveling eastbound on Alkire Road west of Johnson Road and as he was negotiating a curve he went off the right side of the roadway and struck a utility pole.

He was taken to a Grant Hospital. His passenger, 51-year-old Dawn Ellis, of Columbus, was pronounced dead at the scene by Prairie Township Fire Medics.

Ellis was arrested and slated into the Franklin County Jail Tuesday night by Deputies from the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office SWAT team.

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