Schear, of West Ellis Drive in Waynesville, was a longtime Lebanon Citizens National Bank employee and was a local leader involved in community events including the Ohio Sauerkraut Festival.
“Lonnie was pretty much Mr. Waynesville,” Eric Meilstrup, bank president of what is now known as LCNB Bank, said in January.
Latino’s vehicle went left of center while traveling east on Ohio 73 (Oxford State) and collided head-on into Schear’s vehicle that was westbound on Oxford State.
Schear’s vehicle spun sideways and was struck by a third westbound vehicle.
Latino was also injured and taken by medical helicopter to University of Cincinnati Hospital for treatment.
Butler County Prosecutor Michael Gmoser said the reduced charges hold Latino accountable for his actions, but the facts of the case did not rise to the level recklessly operating a vehicle to warrant a felony conviction.
“There was no alcohol involved. This guy lost control of his car in a 55 mph zone. His speedometer was pegged at 65, which 10 miles over is not as egregious as you might think. He should have been slowing down, but the speed is not to the level of reckless,” Gmoser said. “It was a hairline case in the beginning, the speed is more negligence than reckless.”