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Failure to Stop after Deadly Crash Leads to 25 Year Prison Sentence

Ellis County and District Attorney Ann Montgomery announced that Stoney Jewell Ellis, 44, of Red Oak, Texas, was sentenced to 25 years in prison for leaving the scene of an accident that resulted in the death of another person. Texas law requires a person involved in a traffic accident to stop his vehicle, return to the scene of the accident, and determine whether any person involved in the accident requires aid. Even if the driver is not at fault, Texas law requires that the driver stop and see if anyone needs help.

On August 7, 2016, at approximately 11:30 p.m., Albert Record rode his bicycle on Ovilla Road, in Red Oak, Texas. Even though he was wearing reflective clothing, a car hit him from behind, stopped, and then sped away. A nearby homeowner heard the crash and called 911 after he came outside and found Record in a ditch calling for help. Record succumbed to his injuries nine days later.

After investigation, the Red Oak Police Department determined that Stoney Ellis drove the vehicle involved in the accident that killed Record. Officers located a debris field consisting of a bicycle, bicycle parts and automobile parts at the scene of the accident. One of the vehicle parts located had a VIN number that returned to a car registered to Ellis’s father. Ellis’s parents told officers that Ellis, who lived with them, drove the car regularly. Police learned through their investigation that Ellis’s parents had purchased the car for Ellis to drive. Other witnesses also saw Ellis drive the vehicle involved in the accident the day before the day of the crash.  

Police were able to locate and interview Ellis a week after the crash. Ellis claimed that his car had been stolen the day before the day of the crash, and he was not the driver. However, he did not report the car stolen and as to this date, no stolen vehicle report has ever been made.

In November 2020, a warrant was issued for Ellis’s arrest when he failed to appear in Court. Ellis fled the State and was rearrested in July 2021.  

On January 14, 2022, Ellis pleaded guilty to the offense of Accident Involving Death. He also admitted that he had previously been convicted of a felony offense. Ellis agreed to a 25-year prison sentence.

Assistant County and District Attorneys Grace Pandithurai and Marina Thomas prosecuted the case, assisted by County and District Attorney Investigators Todd Woodruff and Johnny Reece. The case was investigated by the Red Oak Police Department.