CRIME

Charges filed against suspect in fatal West Jordan hit-and-run incident

May 4, 2022, 6:29 PM | Updated: May 5, 2022, 1:59 pm
Eli Mitchell, victim of fatal hit and run...
Photo of 13-year-old Eli Mitchell of West Jordan. Photo credit: the Mitchell family.

SALT LAKE CITY — The suspect connected to the hit-and-run incident that claimed the life of a West Jordan teenager was formally charged in 3rd District Court on Wednesday.

Saratoga Springs resident Mason Andrew Ohms, 50, is facing charges of automobile homicide, a second-degree felony. Ohms is also facing charges of leaving the scene of an accident and obstructing justice, both third-degree felonies. Additionally, he failed to yield to an individual in a crosswalk, an infraction.

West Jordan hit-and-run

These charges stem from the incident on April 26 in which it is alleged that Ohms struck 13-year-old Eli Mitchell, who was traveling home from the grocery store on his bicycle at 1510 West 9000 South at 6:01 p.m.

According to court documents, Ohms was driving south on 1510 West, waiting at a red light to make a right-hand turn onto 9000 South. Officials confirmed when this light is red, the crosswalk symbol is lit for eastbound pedestrians. 

According to court documents, however, Ohms accelerated hard into his turn, striking the victim as he entered the crosswalk. Court documents also say that both the front and back tires of the 2007 silver Chevy Silverado driven by Ohms went over the victim. The bicycle reportedly remained hedged under the truck as Ohms continued to travel along 9000 South. 

Witnesses of the incident report that Ohms never stopped after striking the victim, according to the probable cause statement. Witnesses also say that he drove down a short distance on 9000 South before making a U-turn and driving back past the scene, and failed to stop. According to witnesses, Ohms drove back down 1510 West where he stopped in a parking lot and dislodged the bicycle before continuing to travel on 1510 West.

Prior movement of the vehicle

According to the probable cause statement, investigators were able to track the vehicle’s prior movements to a nearby bar. The security camera footage at the bar, secured through a search warrant, showed Ohms entering the establishment at 12:44 p.m. It also showed that he got into his truck at 5:58 p.m. He left at 6 p.m., one minute before the incident.

Records from the bar show that Ohms had drank seven 20-ounce beers during his time at the bar.  

During their search for Ohms, police went to his home. His wife informed police he was not there. His wife made a phone call to see where he was, and informed him that police wanted to speak with him. A short time later, Ohms approached the house, telling police he had parked the vehicle over “there” in the neighborhood. 

When officers told him that they wanted to talk to him about a hit-and-run, Ohms told them “I felt a bump and did not know what it was,” according to the probable cause statement. 

As he was being taken into custody, officers noticed the smell of alcohol on Ohms. From there, warrants were obtained for two blood tests to be done an hour apart. The first test showed a blood-alcohol content of .10%. The blood-alcohol content on the second test came in at .08%.

According to the probable cause statement, Ohms had four previous DUI convictions. As a result, the prosecution has requested that Ohms be held without bail.

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Charges filed against suspect in fatal West Jordan hit-and-run incident