Fatal Crash Caught On Dash Cam Leads To Charges For Ohio Trucker
Hilliard, OH – An Ohio truck driver has been charged with aggravated vehicular homicide following a March 2019 crash that left an 83-year-old woman dead.
Bakhadir Kuzikov, 57 of Dayton, was driving a blue 2015 Volvo tractor-trailer northbound on I-270 on March 26 shortly before 3:30 p.m., according to authorities.
Police say Kuzikov exited at Cemetery Road, but failed to stop at a red light at the top of the ramp.
After going through the red light, Kuzikov’s semi struck a white 2006 Ford Five Hundred sedan that was stopped at the light.
In a chain reaction event, the Ford then struck a 2011 Honda Odyssey, which collided with a 2015 Hyundai Tucson.
Authorities say both the Honda and Hyundai were traveling eastbound on Cemetery Road.
After colliding with the Ford sedan, Kuzikov’s truck traveled across both lanes of Cemetery Road and came to a stop in the ditch on the north side, the preliminary report states.
The accident, in part, was caught on dash cam from Officer Vanessa Spears’ police vehicle, which was traveling eastbound on Cemetery Road at the same time responding to an unrelated call.
Her dash cam caught Kuzikov’s semi traveling through the red light.
Kuzikov’s truck is first seen at the 35 second mark coming from the right.
Watch it below.
The driver of the Ford was 36-year-old Sarah Popovitch, 36, of Columbus.
Riding in the passenger seat of the Ford was Popovitch’s grandmother, 83-year-old Charlotte Finck of Hilliard.
Popovitch and and Finck were both taken to the OhioHealth Riverside Methodist Hospital, where Finck was pronounced dead.
Popovitch was admitted in critical condition. She survived the accident.
The drivers of the Honda and Hyundai were also transported to local hospitals, where they were treated and released the same day, police said.
In a preliminary report, authorities said Kuzikov was driving for trucking company, Simbad LLC, out of Tipp City.
According to data from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), Simbad LLC had 11 drivers and 12 power-units.
Further, FMCSA reports the company is no longer in service, showing a June 17, 2019 “Out Of Service” date.
Andrea Litchfield, a Hilliard police spokeswoman, called the accident investigation “among the most complex the police division has investigated.”
Formal charges against Kuzikov were brought forward on Monday, July 29 in the Franklin County Ohio Clerk of Courts.
Hilliard Division of Police Deputy Chief Eric Grile said drugs and alcohol were not factors in the crash.
Grile also said a subpoena of phone records is a part of the ongoing investigation.
Authorities said Kuzikov is not yet in custody, and an arrest warrant has been issued.
“There is an active warrant, which means he could be arrested at any time by any police agency,” said Christy McCreary, public-information officer for the Franklin County Prosecutor’s Office. “We will have to see if he contacts an attorney or otherwise makes an attempt to turn himself in.”
Transportation Nation Network will continue to keep you updated on this developing story.
(Photo courtesy of Hilliard Division of Police)