Man sentenced in I-75 pursuit that damaged cruiser

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

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Man sentenced in I-75 pursuit that damaged OSP cruiser

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

A Kentucky man who led state troopers on a pursuit at over 100 mph on Interstate 75 in Miami County in December was sentenced Monday to 120 days in jail, a license suspension and ordered to pay $10,000 restitution for damage to a police cruiser.

RELATED: 1 arrested after pursuit on I-75 S in Miami County

Zebadea Baumgardner, 26, pleaded guilty in January to felony operating a vehicle while under the influence and a misdemeanor of failure to comply with a police officer, a charge amended from a felony to misdemeanor in county Common Pleas Court.

Troopers from the Piqua Post  of the Ohio State Highway Patrol said the pursuit began near Piqua when Baumgardner failed to stop for a trooper following reports of a reckless southbound vehicle. The pursuit continued several miles with the driver avoiding tire deflation devices and other attempts to stop him. The pursuit ended south of Tipp City when a trooper’s cruiser was struck.

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“I feel bad for what I did,” Baumgardner said before hearing his sentence.

Public defender Steve King said Baumgardner had sought substance abuse treatment in Kentucky after the incident.

Paul Watkins, assistant county prosecutor, said Baumgardner put several law enforcement officers at risk and intentionally struck the cruiser. He asked Judge Jeannine Pratt to “send a message this type of behavior won’t be tolerated.”

Pratt said Baumgardner had three prior operating while under the influence convictions in Kentucky. She sentenced him to three years of community control, 120 days in jail, a three-year license suspension and the restitution. She said he could face 18 months in prison if he violates conditions of community control.

“This is a no breaks community control. meaning if you don’t follow (all requirements) you will be back before me,” Pratt said. Baumgardner was given credit for 62 days already spent in jail.

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