Circleville, OH Crash Kills Five, Feb 1991


Circleville, Ohio (AP) - A 78-year-old man who walked away from a nursing home Friday died hours later when the stolen car he was driving hit another vehicle, killing all four of its occupants, Pickaway County authorities said.
CHARLES SMITH of Circleville was killed when the car he was driving south in one of two northbound lanes of U.S. 23 struck an oncoming car around, said Linda Eitel, a Pickaway County deputy sheriff.
SMITH, an Alzheimer's disease patient who had been a resident of Brown Memorial Nursing Home in Circleville for about a week, was reported missing from the facility at 7:36 p.m., said Dr. Michael Geron, the county coroner.
Ms. Eitel said SMITH was driving a Chevrolet Monte Carlo that had been reported stolen at 9:04 p.m. about 15 blocks away from the nursing home. She said the identity of the car's owner was being withheld.
PATRICK PITT, 19, of Columbus was driving back home from Lucasville, about 48 miles south of Circleville, when the collision occurred. He was killed along with passengers DELBERT MURPHY, 12, and his sister DEBRA L. MURPHY, 14, both of Columbus, and DEBRA'S boyfriend, HAROLD ADKINS, JR., 16, of Lucasville, Geron said. PITT was the brother of the boyfriend of the Murphy children's mother, Geron said.
All five were trapped in their cars and died instantly of "massive blunt trauma," Geron said.
"It was really something awful," Geron said.

Lancaster Eagle-Gazette Ohio 1991-02-03