Hamler man pleads guilty in fatal I-75 crash

A Hamler man who killed two people in an Interstate 75 crash has pleaded guilty to the charges.

Nicholas Luderman, 25, appeared Aug. 19 in the courtroom of Wood County Common Pleas Judge Joel Kuhlman.

He was traveling southbound on I-75 near Cygnet Road around 10 p.m. on April 3 when he struck a 2003 Dodge Dakota in the rear with his 2018 Chevy Malibu.

The Dodge then traveled across the center median and struck at least two vehicles in the northbound lane.

When Ohio State Highway Patrol troopers arrived on scene, they observed approximately six involved vehicles.

Other vehicles in the area sustained damage as a result of debris, and both the Dodge Dakota and a red Jeep Grand Cherokee became engulfed in flames.

The driver of the Dodge, Andrew Jones, 19, Findlay, and the driver of the Jeep, Kassidi Krzykwa, 23, Kalamazoo, Michigan, both died at the scene.

The other two occupants in the Jeep, Anthony Rastigue and Leti Rastigue, were both flown from the scene with life-threatening injuries.

A fourth vehicle involved, a 2019 Ford Flex, was operated by John Hisey of Michigan. He, his wife, and their two children were transported to Wood County Hospital by EMS with non-life-threatening injuries.

The fifth vehicle involved was a Kia Forte operated by Alyssa Thompson, 27, Bowling Green. Thompson sustained minor injuries and was transported to the Wood County Hospital by EMS.

Luderman left the scene of the crash in his vehicle and, while fleeing, struck a parked car in Cygnet.

He was eventually apprehended by North Baltimore police.

Luderman was indicted in April for 12 charges, including two counts of aggravated vehicular homicide and four counts of aggravated vehicular assault, all alleging that he caused either death or serious physical harm to others as a result of driving under the influence of alcohol or other drugs.

He also was charged with tampering with evidence and three counts of failure to stop after collision involving injury, which are felonies. Additional charges include misdemeanor OVI and misdemeanor failure to stop after collision involving injury.

Luderman was reindicted in May for two counts aggravated vehicular homicide and four counts vehicular assault, all fourth-degree felonies.

He withdrew his former plea of not guilty and entered a plea of guilty to 17 charges.

A third-degree felony charge of failure to stop after an accident will be dismissed at sentencing.

Sentencing was set for Oct. 13.