Editor’s note: This story corrects the fines that Cook had to pay as a result of his sentence. We regret the error.
BROOKFIELD, Ohio (WKBN) – Trumbull County 911 director Ernie Cook was sentenced on charges related to a crash that hurt a teen on a skateboard.
Cook pleaded no contest and was found guilty to loss of physical control and failure to report an accident charges.
On Thursday, he was sentenced to six months of reporting probation and to pay $650 in fines, plus court costs. The jail sentence was suspended.
Cook was charged after an incident July 14, 2018 when he hit a teenager riding a skateboard on Crestwood Drive in Brookfield.
The teen boy took a corner too fast and ran into Cook’s car, according to a police report. The boy hurt his leg.
Police said Cook did not stop after the crash.
Investigators found Cook at his house about 35 minutes after the crash and said he smelled strongly of alcohol and seemed to be intoxicated.
Cook admitted to driving but said he didn’t realize he hit the teen, saying he thought it may have been a dog or a squirrel, according to the police report. He said he was on his way home when he felt a “bump.”
He told officers he drank two 12-ounce beers when he came home but he did not have anything to drink before the crash, according to the report.
Highway Patrol said he failed a field sobriety test and had a blood-alcohol content of .148.
Trumbull County Commissioner Frank Fuda said now that Cook has been convicted the Board of Commissioners will need to talk about how to proceed.
“In this case, because he’s the 911 director, that makes it a little more difficult,” Fuda said.
Fuda said the commissioners will meet in executive session Wednesday to try to decide what action to take with Cook.
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