COLUMBUS — There will be no further scrutiny of a Mercer County man’s claim that his 24-year prison sentence stemming from a quadruple fatal car crash last year was excessive.
Attorneys for Nicholas Schwieterman, 24, of Chickasaw, had argued his sentence constituted “cruel and unusual” punishment and was disproportionate to sentences handed down in similar cases.
On Wednesday, the Ohio Supreme Court declined to hear the case. A similar appeal to the 3rd Ohio District Court of Appeals in Lima was denied in May.
In a written statement, Mercer County Prosecutor Andrew Hinders and Assistant Prosecutor Matthew Fox praised the high court’s decision.
“This latest rejection of Schwieterman’s assertions properly denied Schwieterman’s claim for jurisdiction to the Ohio Supreme Court, and validates the lawfulness of the prison sentence pronounced in the trial court as previously affirmed by the Third District Court of Appeals,” Hinders and Fox wrote. “The Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office is satisfied with the decision and committed to continuing to see that justice is served in this case.”
Schwieterman is serving his sentence at the Toledo Correctional Institution for his role in a March 15, 2008, quadruple-fatal crash at the intersection of Brockman Road and county Road 716A in rural Mercer County.
State experts testified Schwieterman was under the influence of alcohol, cocaine and marijuana when he ran a stop sign at the intersection. Four teenagers — Jordan Moeller, 18, of Celina, Jordan Diller, 19, of Maria Stein, Jordan Goettemoeller, 19, of Maria Stein, and Bradley Roeckner, 19, of Celina — died in the crash.
Wednesday’s ruling does not conclude all pending appeals involving Schwieterman. An appeal to the 3rd Ohio District Court of Appeals remains active.
In that appeal, Schwieterman’s attorneys are seeking to overturn a July decision by Judge Jeffrey Ingraham of Mercer County Common Pleas Court who refused to set aside Schwieterman’s conviction on four counts of involuntary manslaughter, one count of possession of drugs, and one count of operating a vehicle under the influence.
Schwieterman’s attorney argued new evidence, including new calculations and a computer simulation of the crash, proved his client was innocent.
Supreme Court declines to hear appeal in quadruple-fatal case