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Akron police stopped car moments before triple fatal high-speed crash

Posted at 5:40 PM, Apr 21, 2022

AKRON, Ohio — New details are emerging following an Easter day tragedy involving a high-speed crash in Akron that ended with three young males dead.

Akron Police Chief Steve Mylett revealed a white Saturn had been stopped by officers just after 6 p.m., but the driver took off and crashed into a canal less than 30 seconds later.

Police issued a news release on Easter but did not mention the police interaction.

During an interview on Wednesday, Chief Steve Mylett acknowledged he knew about the traffic stop, but he wanted more time to figure out exactly what happened before releasing that information.

"We were very anxious to get some information out because that's our responsibility to get information out accurately to the public, and one of the worst things that I can do as chief is put information out prematurely and then have to go back and correct it or retract it," Mylett said.

According to the chief, officers stopped the Saturn at Eastland and Case avenues for not having a visible license plate and for a turn signal violation.

But shortly after the officers got out of their cruiser, the driver took off at a high rate of speed down Case Avenue and crashed into a Chevy Cruze on Market Street. The officers, who had gotten back into their cruiser in an attempt to stop the vehicle again, didn't have a chance to catch up, Mylett said.

The driver of the Cruze was not injured, but the Saturn rolled, went airborne, and flipped into a canal.

Investigators estimate speeds reached as high as 75-miles-per-hour before the accident. The chief said it's not clear why the driver was running.

All three occupants in the car were killed. They were identified at Arlo Mosley, 25, Raymond Wanzo, 18, and Zion Jackson Grisby, 17, all from Akron.

Mylett said because everything happened so quickly— in about a 30-second span— he doesn't consider the incident a police chase.

"We're talking seconds," Mylett said. "When you're speeding away at such a high rate of speed, you're creating a distance that now is requiring us time to catch up to you."

Akron City Councilwoman Tara Mosley is the aunt of two of the victims. She was among several people who wrote personal messages on a concrete barrier by the canal.

Mosley and other relatives from the families declined to comment to News 5.

"It's a tragic situation and I truly have empathy for the family. I can't imagine what they're going through," Mylett said.