An Akron family is mourning after a high speed chase resulted in the tragic death of their loved one.
Akron Police tried making a traffic stop on South Hawkins Ave after seeing a vehicle run a red light, tried pulling the vehicle over when the driver slowed but continued to flee the scene.
Police gave chase but after speeds reached as high as 55 to 60 mph through the West Akron residential neighborhood, police were commanded to end the chase.
A 2004 Saturn Ion, later determined to be stolen, was driven by 20 year old Timothy S. Goforth of Youngstown.
Goforth continued at high speeds when his car ran a stop sign on Slosson Ave crashing into a 2011 Hyundai Sonata causing the vehicle to flip several times, hit a stop sign and landing in a someone’s yard according to witnesses.
The Hyundai was driven by 53 year old Stacey McGinnis who was transported to a local hospital where she later died of blunt force trauma - internal injuries from the crash.
Goforth who fled the scene on foot was later apprehended at the intersection of Mercer Ave and Lawton Street, arrested and charged with aggravated vehicular homicide, aggravated vehicular assault as well as receiving stolen property, and hit-skip according to local police. Police continue to defend their actions after questions arose to their high speed chase through the residential neighborhood. “In accordance with department practices, the pursuit was immediately reviewed by the officer’s immediate supervisor.”
“The supervisor canceled the pursuit; police acknowledged the pursuit being cancelled and turned off their overhead lights and sirens and turned the cruisers in the opposite direction of the Saturn.” Your Reporter Newspaper recently spoke with Tracey McGinnis, older sister of Stacey who appreciates the police backing off the chase, but questions weather or not the situation could have been handled differently from the start.
“This un-timely and un-called for death is hard to deal with but we’re a close family and we’re just trying to get through the burial preparations right now,” said Tracey.
“My family questions how this situation was handled in the beginning going that fast in a residential neighborhood but at the same time we appreciate the police at least trying to back off.”
She hopes to sit down after the dust settles and discuss better ways to handle situations such as this, with police and even perhaps city leaders.
Who was Stacey McGinnis? Tracey laughs at the questions because according to Tracey, her sister who worked as a MR Support Specialist at Akron Children’s Hospital was humorous.
“Stacey was one who would always keep you laughing. In fact, my last conversation with her had me laughing so hard - no one could have told me that would have been our last conversation.”
Continuing with a description of her sister, “I describe my sister as a beacon of light, always smiling - always trying to give a kind word.”
As for her comment to the young man who is responsible for her sister’s sudden death, Tracey said, “I forgive him but I still feel he needs to pay for what he has done.” “Am I angry? - Absolutely I am, but I know Stacey and I know how she would handle the situation – she’d handle it with forgiveness; she would want us to move on.”
On that note she turned her attention to those who have reached out to the family in support saying, “Thank You, Thank You, Thank you.” “With all of this love and support, I know my sister is smiling down on us.”
Services for Stacey will be Saturday December 22, 2018 at New Hope Baptist Church. Calling hours 10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Funeral services at 12:00 pm.; Rhoden Funeral home handling services.