Trumbull County grand jury indicts 2
By Ed Runyan
A Trumbull County grand jury indicted Paul Wodianka, 42, on two counts of aggravated vehicular homicide, four counts of drug abuse and one count of driving under the influence of alcohol and or drugs.
Police said he was involved in a head-on crash that killed a Newton Falls couple Sept. 21 in Newton Township.
Police took Wodianka, of Mahoning Avenue, Diamond, into custody Wednesday afternoon after he was secretly indicted by the grand jury.
He is in the county jail without eligibility to make bond.
The charges carry a penalty of up to about 20 years in prison if he’s convicted.
Troopers with the Ohio State Highway Patrol said they suspected Wodianka may have been under the influence of alcohol and or drugs during the crash and said blood and urine tests were done on him while he was being treated at St. Elizabeth Health Center, Youngstown.
The results of the tests were not available late Wednesday afternoon.
Wodianka, who was convicted twice in Mahoning County courts for operating a vehicle while impaired, told police he had gone to Sam’s Pizza on South Canal Street in Newton Falls about 7 p.m. Sept. 21.
About 10:30 p.m., Wodianka’s vehicle crossed the center lane on South Canal and hit the car driven by Jamie Danes, 37, head-on at a high rate of speed.
The crash killed Danes, who worked at the Austintown Rulli Bros. store, and his wife, Emily Danes, 29, who worked for the Cadle Co. in Newton Falls.
The Daneses were returning home from dinner and a movie in Niles to celebrate their wedding anniversary.
The Daneses have an 8-year-old son.
The grand jury also indicted a 28-year-old former Cleveland man on charges that could carry the death penalty.
The indictment says David R. Martin killed Jeremy Cole, 21, and attempted to kill Melissa Putnam, 29, on Sept. 27 in Putnam’s Oak Street Southwest home.
Putnam said last week Martin shot her in the back of the head.
Putnam said Martin, who was living on Oak Circle Southeast, came into her house and ordered her to tie up Cole and find the keys to Cole’s car.
Cole, of Robert Avenue Northwest, was a friend who had come to her home that day to drive her to a job, Putnam said.
After Putnam failed to find the keys, Martin tied up Putnam and then went into the room where Cole was bound and shot him.
Martin came back to the bedroom where Putnam was and shot her, too.
Martin, also in the county jail, is charged with aggravated murder, one count of attempted aggravated murder with a specification that he is a repeat violent offender, aggravated robbery, kidnapping, being a felon in possession of a firearm, receiving stolen property and tampering with evidence.