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Prosecutor: Wrong-way crash that killed Mason family was ‘deliberate’

Abby Michaels, 21, faces murder charges in three deaths
Posted at 4:46 PM, Jul 18, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-18 17:11:12-04

MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Ohio — A Xenia woman facing murder charges deliberately caused the crash that killed three members of a Mason family, Montgomery County Prosecutor Mat Heck said Thursday.

Abby Michaels, 21, was indicted Thursday on six counts of murder and other charges stemming from the St. Patrick’s Day crash on Interstate 75 in Moraine that killed Timmy and Karen Thompson and their 10-year-old daughter Tessa, the Journal-News reported.

“This tragedy could have easily been avoided. (Michaels) was upset and decided to take this action,” Heck said in a media release.

“Evidence shows this defendant knew what she was doing and what she wanted to accomplish.”

While Michaels was found to be driving under the influence of alcohol, Heck said alcohol was not a factor in the crash and called Michaels’ actions “deliberate and outrageous” during a press conference Thursday afternoon.

Michaels was booked at the Montgomery County Jail Thursday after being taken into custody at a Washington Township business, according to prosecutors.

Police said Michaels was driving north in the southbound lanes on I-75 when the Kia she was driving collided with the Thompsons' Camry.

The father, 51, and the daughter died at the scene. The mother, 50, died at a hospital, police said.

Michaels was taken to Miami Valley Hospital after the crash and listed in serious condition.

Moraine police records indicate the crash, which occurred about 8:10 p.m. and backed up traffic for hours, involved alcohol. Michaels had what medics described as beer “coming from her mouth” and was dressed for the Irish holiday, police records show.

Michaels crossed over the median in the area of the 49 mile marker “via the paved turnaround restricted for authorized and emergency vehicles,” according to police.

The Journal-News is a media partner of WCPO 9 On Your Side.