Woman pleads guilty to vehicular manslaughter

CANFIELD — The woman who police said caused a fatal crash in Beaver Township has pleaded guilty to vehicular manslaughter.

Ashley Ratkowski, 24, of Austintown, pleaded today in Mahoning County Area Court here, said Nick Modarelli, assistant county prosecutor.

Ratkowski was charged in October 2009 for the September 2009 crash that killed Lewis Morris, 80, and his wife, Elizabeth, 77, both of Leetonia, who were dead at the scene.

Ratkowski was driving a Dodge Caliber north on state Route 46 in Beaver, and Thomas Johnson, of Warren, was driving a tractor-trailer in the same direction on the day of the accident, according to police.

Reports said Ratkowski traveled left of center and struck the truck driven by Lewis Morris, causing the truck to go left of center and strike the tractor-trailer driven by Johnson.

Modarelli said she was sentenced to 180 days in jail, which was suspended, a $1,000 fine, 80 hours of community service, two years of probation and two years of license suspension.

For the complete story, read Saturday's Vindicator and Vindy.com

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