Fatal crash from March 2015 results in indictment

By Ryan Carter - [email protected]



A Nevada man was taken into custody by deputies on Wednesday to face charges of aggravated vehicular homicide, involuntary manslaughter, and operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol, for his alleged role in a March 14 two-vehicle crash that claimed the life of a 26-year-old Fayette County man.

A Fayette County grand jury recently returned an indictment against Jason B. Woolley, 38, of Las Vegas, for the alleged operation of the vehicle that Billy Rankin was a passenger in at the time of the crash, according to Sheriff Vernon Stanforth. Rankin died in the accident that occurred at 2:39 a.m. March 14, 2015 on State Route 41 North near the intersection of State Route 734 in Jefferson Township.

“Upon receiving a warrant for the arrest of Mr. Woolley, it was discovered that he had relocated to the state of Nevada,” said Stanforth. “With the assistance of the Clark County, Nevada Metropolitan Police Department and the United States Marshal Service, Mr. Woolley was taken into custody in the state of Nevada without incident.”

Following an extradition hearing, the U.S. Marshal Service assisted in returning Woolley to Ohio, where he was released to deputies from Fayette County on Wednesday.

On March 14, a 2003 Chevrolet Trailblazer driven by Wooley was heading southbound on State Route 41 North when it struck a 2015 Freightliner semi-tractor trailer, driven by Jesse Allen, Jr., 49, of Hermitage, Tenn., as it was pulling from the parking lot of the Flying J truck stop onto State Route 41 North. Wooley’s vehicle struck the trailer of Allen’s vehicle on the rear driver’s side as it crossed both lanes of State Route 41, according to Stanforth.

Wooley and Rankin were trapped inside their vehicle before being extricated by the FCSO Crash Response Team. Rankin was transported to the Adena Medical Center in Jamestown where he was pronounced dead. Wooley was taken to the Miami Valley Medical Center for treatment of his injuries. Allen reported no injuries at the time of the crash.

As of Thursday night, Woolley was incarcerated in the Fayette County Jail pending his initial appearance in the Fayette County Court of Common Pleas.


By Ryan Carter

[email protected]

Reach Ryan Carter at 740-313-0352 or on Twitter @rywica

Reach Ryan Carter at 740-313-0352 or on Twitter @rywica