Hearing set for Jesse Whitaker’s underage drinking arrest

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DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – An arraignment hearing has been set for April 15 at 1:30 at the Dayton Municipal Court for Jesse Whitaker.

Whitaker was arrested overnight, April 11 by University of Dayton police for underage drinking.

He posted 10 percent of his $1,000 bond and has been released from jail since.

2 NEWS has reached out to Whitaker’s counsel, Dayton DUI attorney Charles Rowland.  He declined to comment on this most recent case.  University of Dayton officials also have no comment.

The 20-year-old is already facing OVI charges from a previous incident in Beavercreek on March 17.

Beavercreek Police say Whitaker crashed his car on US Route 35 west near Interstate 675.

For that incident, he faces charges of OVI, driving under suspension, giving false information and underaged consumption.

These recent incidents are not the 20-year-old’s first brush with the law.

Whitaker, then 17-years-old, was convicted for the death of 3 Bellbrook teens, following a serious crash.

He plead guilty to vehicular homicide in exchange for a plea deal which gave him 300 hours of community service and a suspended license until he’s 21.

Officials ruled out alcohol as a factor, but believe speed caused the accident in 2012.

The family of one teen, Juliana Hawk, is shocked at the news of another arrest.

But these loved ones are making efforts towards positive change.

Whitaker’s blood alcohol count (BAC) was not tested after the fatal crash nearly three years ago.

The family along with one local lawmaker are working to change that and bring awareness to underage drinking.

“He should have been tested that night, which he wasn’t. But as far as future families we don’t want other families to go through the things we have.”Hawk’s aunt Lisa Sikorski explained. “And as far as other kids, if this can bring awareness to other families to get their families to stop going out drinking and driving thinking that one drink is okay when it’s not.”

Representative Rick Peralis (R, Beavercreek) is working with thew Hawk family to raise awareness and draft legislation.

“No one expects their child is gonna be the one that gets killed. No one expects that,” he said.

And that is why the representative tells 2 NEWS he’s pushing for laws for BAC testing and ones that will put a few more parameters for teen drivers.

Rep. Peralis says both he and members of the Hawk family will meet with Ohio’s director of public safety and discuss the challenges officers and deputies face while responding to fatal crashes and way they can improve.

2 NEWS will continue to follow this case.

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