Defendant expected to change plea in crash that killed Youngstown fire chief

Josephine Palmer, of Northfield, is charged with vehicular manslaughter and failure to yield

Josephine Palmer pleaded not guilty to failure to yield to a traffic device and vehicular manslaughter. A pretrial was set for December 13, and a $1,250 bond was set.


ASHTABULA, Ohio (WKBN) – The woman accused of causing the crash that killed a Youngstown firefighter is due back in court in a couple months.

That’s when she’s expected to plead guilty.

Josephine Palmer, of Northfield, is charged with vehicular manslaughter and failure to yield.

Troopers said she was distracted when she pulled her minivan into the path of Youngstown Fire Department Battalion Chief Ron Russo’s motorcycle in October.

This happened on State Route 45 in Saybrooke Township near Geneva.

Wednesday morning, Palmer was back in Ashtabula Municipal Court. Her lawyer indicated that she will make a change of plea in the case when she returns to court in February.

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