Store clerk indicted for role in fatal Hoeflinger crash


More than six months after an Ottawa Hills High School student was killed in a drunken-driving crash, the clerk at a local liquor store was indicted today for allegedly selling a bottle of vodka to the teen’s underage friend.

Nicholas Thompson, 38, of 340 S. Reynolds Rd., was indicted by a Lucas County grand jury for selling or furnishing intoxicating liquor to a minor, an unclassified misdemeanor punishable by a mandatory fine of $500 and a possible jail term of up to six months. According to state law, the fine could be as high as $1,000.

The Feb. 1 sale preceded the death of Brian Hoeflinger, 18, who was drinking at a friend’s birthday party then got behind the wheel, drove off Edgehill Road in Ottawa Hills, and struck a tree. His blood-alcohol level was 0.15 – nearly twice the legal limit of .08 for drivers 21 and older.