FRANKTON — Sheriff’s deputies have arrested an Anderson man three months after he was involved in a head-on collision in which a motorcyclist later died of injuries.
Daniel A. Ellis, 35, of Anderson, is charged with Level 4 felony causing death when operating a motor vehicle with a schedule I or II controlled substance.
Ellis struck a motorcycle driven by Danny Kinser, 65, of Anderson, on July 1. Kinser was airlifted to St. Vincent Hospital in Indianapolis where he later died from his injuries, according to an affidavit of probable cause Caitlin Foster-Morency of the Madison County Sheriff’s Department.
Deputies were able to determine that the 1997 Ford Windstar, driven by Ellis, was traveling south on County Road 600 West when it crossed the center line and struck Kinser who was riding a 2013 Harley-Davidson motorcycle.
“The evidence at the scene shows the van was 100% left of center and operating entirely in the northbound lane while traveling southbound,” Foster-Morency wrote in the affidavit.
Ellis told deputies he had fallen asleep prior to the accident and at first he agreed for his blood to be drawn for chemical testing while he was at the hospital. He later changed his mind and a warrant for a blood sample was obtained.
When questioned, Ellis said he got off work in Tipton and was on his way home and falling asleep.
“He told me when he fell asleep the last time, he came to, he was in the process of getting in a wreck with the other vehicle,” Foster-Morency wrote.
While being questioned, Ellis would not open his eyes saying he was afraid there was still glass on his face from the accident and he told the deputy he was unable to get out of bed to perform a field sobriety test.
Ellis told the sheriff’s deputy he was driving two different types of vehicles before naming the correct vehicle he was driving at the time of the accident.
“It appeared as if Daniel was falling asleep while speaking to me,” Foster-Morency wrote in her affidavit. “During his audio recorded statement and after it, he appeared to be falling asleep mid-sentence and several times was snoring mid-conversation.”
Lab results from the blood draw found amphetamine and methamphetamine, both schedule II controlled substances present in Ellis’ blood sample, Foster-Morency wrote in the affidavit. THC, a schedule I controlled substance, and Benzoylecgonine, a metabolite of cocaine, were also identified in the blood sample.
Kinser was a truck driver for Gleaner’s Food Bank for five years before his retirement in 2017, according to an obituary by Rozelle-Johnson Funeral Service.
He is survived by his father, wife, four daughters, nine grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.