4-year-old crash victim in critical condition; charges pending against semi driver.

July 6, 2016

U.S. 31 crash 2#OceanaCountyNews #US31Crash

By Allison Scarbrough. Editor.

SHELBY TOWNSHIP — The youngest victim of the semi, two-car crash Tuesday afternoon, July 5, on southbound US 31 near Stony Lake Road is listed in critical condition, said Oceana County Sheriff’s Office Lt. Craig Mast, and charges against the semi driver are pending.

Connor Julius Weston, 4, of Port Huron was the most seriously hurt of the seven people involved in the crash.

The driver of the semi, Jonathon William Ashley, 25, of Ludington, rear-ended two vehicles, one of which was transporting the Wesley family.

“He will not be cited until all injuries have stabilized,” Mast said. “If the injuries may turn worse, we don’t want to have him charged for a minor offense. We will have to wait to see how everyone is doing and then have the prosecuting attorney (Joseph Bizon) review the situation before charges are issued.”

Ashley rear-ended the two vehicles in heavy southbound traffic near New Era, according to an Oceana County Sheriff’s Office accident report.

Ashley was driving a 2016 Freightliner owned by Apache Logistics of Holland at 12:45 p.m. when the horrific crash occurred. The accident scene backed up traffic for hours as vacationers were heading back south after the Fourth of July weekend.

According to the report, Connor Weston was most seriously injured in the crash. He was riding in a 2000 Subaru Outback driven by Benajmain Seeley Weston. Also in the car were Michelle Joy Weston, 36; Dylan Thomas Weston, 7; and Logan Alexander Weston, 10.

The semi also struck a 2016 Mazda driven by Jerrine Marie Forrest, 34, of Greensburg, Pennsylvania.

“Ashley, Forrest and Weston were all traveling south on US 31 near Stony Lake Road,” the accident report states. “Forrest and Weston were slowing down for traffic backed up on the freeway. Ashley stated he was looking to his right at a truck which went off the roadway to get to the Stony Lake Road exit ramp to avoid the traffic. When Ashley looked back in front of him, Forrest and Weston’s vehicles were slowing for traffic. Ashley’s semi-truck ran into the back of both Forrest and Weston’s vehicles.”

Ashley received bumps and bruises in the crash. Besides Connor Weston’s critical injuries, all of the others involved received serious injuries, according to the report.

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