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[ISP] Two Peru Residents Killed in Miami County Crash
Start Date: 3/6/2013Start Time: 12:00 AM
End Date: 3/6/2013End Time: 11:59 PM
Entry Description

Bunker Hill – This morning, at approximately 9:50 a.m., officers from the Indiana State Police, the Miami County Sheriff’s Department, and the Bunker Hill Police Department responded to a two vehicle crash on U.S. 31 at State Road 218 (south junction), in which two Peru, IN, residents died.

The preliminary crash investigation by Trooper Chuck Meyer revealed that Russell Ooten, 87, Peru, IN, was driving a 1995 Ford Econoline van southbound on U.S. 31, approaching State Road 218. Ooten attempted to turn eastbound onto State Road 218, but failed to yield at the median crossover. The van continued across the median crossover and into the northbound lanes of U.S. 31. The van was struck by a northbound 2013 Chevrolet Suburban. The Chevrolet was driven by Jeremy Burton, 26, Greenwood, IN. After impact, the van continued southeast into the lot of a gas station. It came to rest after hitting the protective barrier next to a row of gas pumps.

Earl Ooten, 79, Peru, IN, a passenger in the van, was flown by Samaritan Helicopter to Parkview Hospital in Ft. Wayne, IN. He later succumbed to injuries sustained in the crash. Margie Highfill, 79, Peru, IN, also a passenger in the van, was pronounced dead at the crash scene by Miami County Deputy Coroner Todd Burns. Russell Ooten was transported by ambulance to Dukes Memorial Hospital with a head injury. He was later transferred to Lutheran Hospital in Ft. Wayne. Burton was transported to Dukes Memorial Hospital with a complaint of back and neck pain.

This crash is still under investigation, but at this time neither the use of alcohol nor illegal narcotics is suspected as having contributed to the crash.

Trooper Meyer was assisted at the crash scene by Lt. Jeremy Kelly, First Sergeant Lonie Slisher, Master Trooper Joe Swisher, Trooper Ezariah Bricknell, Trooper Wendell Beachy, Trooper Adam York, the Grissom Fire Department, the Pipe Creek Fire Department, Miami County Emergency Management, and Galveston EMS.

Contact Information:
Name: Sergeant Tony Slocum
Phone: 800-382-0689
Email: tslocum@isp.in.gov
Miami County Fatal Crash
Entry Type:
Press Release
Entry Category:
  • Alerts and Notification
  • IN.gov Category:
  • Law & Justice
  • Public Safety
  • Agency Name
    Police, Indiana State

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