Lakewood mom pleads not guilty to hitting 2 construction workers on I-71, killing 1 of them

Lakewood mom pleads not guilty to hitting 2 construction workers on I-71, killing 1 of them

BEREA, Ohio (WOIO) - The woman accused of driving drunk and hitting two construction workers on I-71 in Brook Park Wednesday night pleaded not guilty at her arraignment Friday morning in Berea Municipal Court.

Sabra Tolliver, 31, is charged with aggravated vehicular homicide, aggravated vehicular assault and OVI.

Fatal crash kills construction worker, injures another on I-71
Fatal crash kills construction worker, injures another on I-71 (Source: WOIO)

Brook Park police said Tolliver struck the workers at 11:25 p.m. Wednesday on I-71 south, near Snow Road.

Rafael Solis, 61, was pronounced dead at the scene.

The construction worker was struck and killed on I-71 in Brook Park.
The construction worker was struck and killed on I-71 in Brook Park. (Source: 173308153001102)

The second worker, Brandon Hruska, was transported to MetroHealth Hospital.

Hruska suffered a broken arm, a broken leg and underwent surgery for a broken eye socket.

Both men worked for TraffTech and were doing pavement work on the interstate near I-480.

After the crash, police said Tolliver kept driving and another construction worker followed her on the highway to the next exit, Bagley Road, where she stopped at the Chipotle.

Witnesses said her boyfriend works at that restaurant.

Police took Tolliver into custody in Chipotle’s parking lot.

One officer is heard on body camera video saying, “There’s fluorescent material in the hood from a fluorescent yellow vest. You can actually see blood on the windshield. She stated that she only hit a barrel, and she stated that she didn’t feel comfortable pulling over to the side of the road, so she came here.”

The Ohio Department of Transportation released the following statement:

“The Ohio Department of Transportation sends our sincere condolences to the family and co-workers of the TraffTech Inc. employee that was killed, and our thoughts are with the employee who was injured. The men and women building and maintaining our roadways have family, friends, and loved ones they want to go home to at the end of every shift. While there are many safety precautions in place to keep these workers safe, motorists must do their part by slowing down or moving over when approaching roadside workers. Not only is it the right thing to do, it’s the law.”

– John Picuri, District 12 Deputy Director

The Lakewood mom has no prior felonies, but was convicted of OVI in 2014.

Tolliver waived her right to a preliminary hearing and will appear in Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court on Oct. 18.

She remains behind bars on a $1 million bond.

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