New Paris man sentenced for fatal OVI wreck on way to work

Lucas Kelch was sentenced to prison by a Miami County judge for aggravated vehicular homicide

Combined ShapeCaption
Lucas Kelch was sentenced to prison by a Miami County judge for aggravated vehicular homicide

TROY — A Preble County man was sentenced Monday to 3.5 to five years in prison for aggravated vehicular homicide and operating a vehicle while under the influence in the 2021 death of a Bradford man.

“It was an accident, it was terrible. I want to apologize to everybody,” Lucas Kelch, 39, told Judge Stacy Wall during sentencing in Miami County Common Pleas Court.

The New Paris man was charged in the July 6, 2021, death of Bryan K. Gibboney, 28, of Bradford, in a single-vehicle accident in the area of Ohio 48 and Covington-Bradford Road.

Sheriff’s investigators said the men were heading to work in the early morning hours when the vehicle went off the road and struck a wood line.

Kelch later pleaded no contest to aggravated vehicular homicide and OVI. He was found guilty.

Wall said the car ran a stop sign, went airborne and cut two trees in half. Neither man was wearing a seat belt.

Wall said she didn’t think Kelch had any intention of harming Gibboney, but he was driving under a license suspension and tested positive for drugs including marijuana.

Gibboney’s fiancé told the judge, “I just don’t understand what happened. That is what I want to know.”

Kelch was sentenced to the prison time, a mandatory lifetime driver’s license suspension and a mandatory fine of $1,075 and court costs.

About the Author