Updated Fri, Aug 30, 2013 3:39 pm
A Logan man is being held in Southeastern Ohio Regional Jail for endangering children and other charges after he drove his truck into Scott’s Creek on Tuesday.
Anthony “Tony” Marolt, Jr., 31, has been charged with three counts of endangering children, obstructing official business, reckless operation and driving under suspension.
The Hocking County Sheriff’s Office received an anonymous call on Wednesday about an accident that was not reported. The caller said that Marolt had driven his vehicle into Scott’s Creek with his minor child inside and failed to report the incident.
HCSO Sgt. Derek Boch contacted Marolt at his residence. He confirmed that a 1998 Ford Explorer, which belonged to someone else, had been involved in an accident the evening before and was submerged underwater at Scott’s Creek, according to a release from the HCSO.
Marolt allegedly said he allowed a 15-year-old relative to drive the car, which as first the relative confirmed to Boch as true. The 15-year-old later recanted the statement, telling Boch that Marolt was concerned about getting caught driving without a license.
The 15-year-old allegedly told Boch that Marolt had been drinking in the vehicle while the 15-year-old and Marolt’s children, ages nine and two, also were inside the car. The relative said Marolt decided to go “back roading” and drove down a path leading to Scott’s Creek.
The relative said the vehicle was in a shallow part of the creek and Marolt attempted to back-up, but drove over the edge of an underwater cliff instead.
Marolt, the 15-year-old and the 9-year-old were able to escape through the driver’s side door. The vehicle submerged and Marolt dove into the creek and saved the 2-year-old from a car seat, according to the release.
Marolt neither informed law enforcement nor had the children’s conditions checked.
Marolt was arrested at his residence transported to SEORJ. He was arraigned in Hocking County Municipal Court on Thursday and was given a $20,000 recognize bond.
The HCSO Dive Team is scheduled to go to the scene of the accident and examine the submerged vehicle Friday morning.
Marolt is not the first person to encounter the cliff in Scott’s Creek, commonly referred to as the “Death Hole.”
A child named Jason Hamilton was reportedly wading in Scott's Creek in the early 1980s when he went into the death hold and died.
An article published in the Hocking Sentinel on Aug. 18, 1887 also recounted the deaths of John and Clara Bensenhaver, who drowned in the creek. The Bensenhavers were driving their carriage in the shallow part of the creek when it went over the 12 to 15 foot cliff, similar to Marolt’s car.
Numerous Hocking County residents shared their stories about the “Death Hole” in the article, including Mike Whalen, who said he frequently witnessed cattle approach the area of the creek and then disappear.