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Hit-and-run accident kills RVHS doctor

A Lewis County, Ky.

Wednesday, September 08, 1999

A Lewis County, Ky., man faces second-degree manslaughter charges after a hit-and-run accident Monday took the life of an Ironton man.

Dr. Peter Tseng, 55, of Ironton, was killed instantly when a car driven by Patrick C. Sullivan, 24, of Quincy, Ky., struck Tseng’s vehicle a half mile west of Kentucky 10, Lewis County Sheriff Bill Lewis said.

Tseng was an anesthesiologist and consultant at River Valley Health System and had served Lawrence County residents through his work at RVHS for more than eight years at the time of his death.

Tseng’s car was driven by his wife, Chin Mei Tseng, also of Ironton, who was transported by Care First Ambulance to Southern Ohio Medical Center in Portsmouth for treatment of related injuries. Tseng and his wife apparently were traveling toward Ironton at the time of the incident.

At about 11:48 p.m. Monday, Lewis’s office received the emergency call and responded to the scene, where they found the driver of the second vehicle involved in the accident had taken his car and fled, Lewis said.

"It’s a kind of interesting case in that, when we arrived on the scene, an intensive investigation started to find the driver of the other vehicle," Lewis said. "From the evidence at the scene, the investigation focused on Mr. Sullivan, who we discovered had hidden his vehicle about five miles east of the scene near the Ohio River in a wooded, overgrown area."

Once officers discovered the vehicle, an arrest was not far away.

"Sullivan was arrested by Deputy Sheriff Elden Riffe and myself at a residence in Quincy at approximately 5 a.m. (Tuesday) morning," Lewis said. "He is charged with second-degree manslaughter, which is a Class C felony in Kentucky."

Deputy Coroner Dr. John Ocull and Commonwealth Attorney Lloyd Spears also assisted in the investigation and subsequent arrest, Lewis added.

"They were instrumental in providing assistance in obtaining search warrants and other legal necessities in the investigation," he said. "The Garrison rescue squad also assisted at the scene."

Sullivan is currently detained at the Lewis County Jail.