Alyssa Irwin-Debraux

Dayton woman ‘felt pressure,’ seeks plea change in deadly police chase

A Dayton woman wants to withdraw her guilty pleas in a deadly high-speed police chase through Moraine and Miami Twp.

A court official said Alyssa Irwin-Debraux, 19, stated in a letter to the judge that she has changed her mind in admitting to grand theft, failure to comply and involuntary manslaughter in the Sept. 11 crash that killed local Realtor Mary Taulbee.

The letter, sent to Judge Michael Krumholtz in recent days, is not on the Montgomery County Clerk of Courts’ website and a copy of it was not immediately available to this news organization.

However, it states that Irwin-Debraux “felt pressured” by her attorney to enter the pleas and doesn’t “fully understand” how the judicial system works, a court official said.

The new details became known days before Irwin-Debraux’s scheduled sentencing Monday.

Defense attorney Keith Fricker told this news organization “obviously, I didn’t pressure her.”

Fricker said he learned about the letter on Thursday after speaking with Krumholtz. He said he then met with his client.

“She’s a young girl,” Fricker said, “and she may be somewhat scared and somewhat nervous of the unknown.”

Fricker said he plans to meet Monday with the judge and Irwin-Debraux.

The high-speed chase involving Moraine police officer Matt Barrie began after a Jeep was reported stolen and Barrie spotted a vehicle on Ohio 741 matching its description, authorities said.

Authorities said Barrie sought to pull the Jeep over, but it fled, heading south into Miami Twp., where records show it reached more than 80 miles per hour.

During the chase, a car heading north on Ohio 741 attempted to pull over into another lane to prevent being hit by the Jeep, according to the prosecutor’s office.

The car hit the back of a Hyundai being driven by Taulbee, a 57-year-old longtime Realtor who had worked in Dayton, Englewood, Lebanon, Miamisburg, Springboro and Washington Twp.

The impact caused Taulbee to lose control of the car and spin in front of the Moraine cruiser, authorities said.

The cruiser struck the Hyundai, killing Taulbee.

Irwin-Debraux continued to flee until she crashed into another vehicle and flipped the Jeep onto its top near the Dayton Mall entrance, police said

She fled on foot to a nearby gas station, where she was arrested by Miami Twp. police.

A grand jury cleared Barrie of any criminal liability.