Driver charged in double-fatal crash

McDonald teen charged with vehicular homicide

January 14, 2014
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From left, Joseph Bowland and Michael Gregg, the victims in a July 27 fatal crash in Smith Township.
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Joseph Bowland
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Michael Gregg

A McDonald teen was charged Monday with two counts of vehicular homicide after state police say he was high on marijuana and speeding at the time of a single-car crash that killed two men in Smith Township nearly six months ago.

Jordan D. Jacobson, 19, of 108 Terrace St., was arrested Monday afternoon and charged in the July 27 crash on Joffre-Bulger Road that killed Michael “Dillon” Gregg, 22, of Bulger, and Joseph Bowland, 20, of McDonald.

In addition to the two vehicular homicide counts, Jacobson also faces charges of vehicular homicide while driving under the influence, aggravated assault, aggravated assault while driving under the influence, reckless driving and speeding. District Judge David Mark arraigned Jacobson and released him on $100,000 unsecured bond.

State Trooper Todd Stephenson said a witness told investigators that Jacobson had smoked marijuana less than an hour before the crash and that he was speeding and driving recklessly. Jacobson lost control on a sharp left-hand curve near Manor Drive and tried to correct the car, but that prompted the vehicle to “barrel roll” for more than 250 feet, Stephenson said.

Gregg and Bowland were both ejected in the 1:30 a.m. crash and later died at Weirton (W.Va.) Medical Center. Benjamin Bowman, 20, of McDonald, suffered serious injuries in the crash.

Investigators estimated that Jacobson was driving 78 miles per hour when he lost control of the car.

Toxicology tests performed at Allegheny General Hospital in Pittsburgh showed that Jacobson had traces of marijuana in his system, police said.

Defense attorney Thomas Will of Pittsburgh, who is representing Jacobson, declined to comment on the case.

Jacobson’s preliminary hearing before Mark is scheduled for Jan. 22 at 9:30 a.m.

Mike Jones has been a news reporter since 2005, covering crime, state and municipal government, education and energy. In addition to working at the Observer-Reporter, he also has spent time at the Charleston (W.Va.) Daily Mail and He holds a journalism degree from West Virginia University.

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