Plea deal reached in Rogers vehicular homicide case

LISBON – A plea agreement was reportedly reached in Columbiana County Municipal Court in the case of Deborah Eells, the Rogers woman accused of vehicular homicide in the death of Amanda Bibbee, 28 of East Liverpool, on April 12, 2012.

Assistant County Prosecutor Virginia Barborak said the charge will be reduced to vehicular manslaughter. The reduction from a first-degree misdemeanor to a second-degree misdemeanor was with the consent of Bibbee’s family.

“There is no justice for Amanda at all,” Barborak said. “This doesn’t bring justice, but hopefully it will bring closure.”

There were several members of the families and friends of the victim and Eells in the courtroom on Tuesday. Some will be allowed to make statements at the sentencing hearing set for April 17. On that date, Barborak said she will recommend Eells be sentenced to 90 days in jail suspended, with a 90-day house arrest sentence instead. Barborak also will recommend a $750 fine and an 18-month license suspension. Additionally, she will suggest 150 hours of community service at a charity Bibbee would have supported.

According to the highway patrol reports at the time, Eells, 58, Dyke Road, Rogers, had been driving on state Route 7 north of Rogers when the vehicles collided in a head-on crash. Bibbee was pronounced dead at the scene, while Eells and two children in Bibbee’s van were taken to St. Elizabeth’s in Youngstown.

In another vehicular homicide charge before Judge Mark Frost, the defense attorney for Michael Bair requested money to hire a crash reconstruction specialist to go over the highway patrol’s conclusions. Frost approved up to $5,000 for the matter, which matches the estimate which was given.

Bair, 31, of Poland, faces a vehicular homicide charge after David Mayfield, 35, Annesley Road, East Liverpool, was killed on March 13 by a dump truck overturning onto his Dodge Durango off the side of state Route 7. Bair, the driver of the dump truck, was hauling gravel for Sebastian Trucking Inc.