Tuscarawas County man charged with 14th OVI offense after hit-skip crash; driver identified


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Ohio State Highway Patrol troopers have charged a local man with his 14th OVI offense following a hit-skip crash on State Route 39.

John F. Owens, 60, of Uhrichsville, was involved in the incident on June 24 at 3:13 p.m. near Interstate 77 in Dover Township. Owens was driving a 2004 Chevrolet Blazer eastbound on State Route 39 when he struck the rear of a 2001 Chevrolet Silverado. He then fled the scene.

Through their investigation, troopers located the Chevrolet Blazer and Owens at the registered owner’s residence. Owens refused all field sobriety tests, including a breath test, and was subsequently arrested for operating a vehicle while under the influence.

This case will be reviewed by the Tuscarawas County Prosecutor’s Office for additional charges of felony OVI, assured clear distance ahead, hit-skip, driving under suspension, and no operator’s license. Owens has two previous felony OVI convictions.

Authorities encourage the public to safely report impaired drivers and drug activity by calling #677 or 911.