A Norwalk woman suspected of dealing heroin faces a May 8 Ottawa County trial in connection with an unrelated fatality involving her 8-year-old niece.
Christy Thornsberry, 30, of 80 1/2 Benedict Ave., told authorities she was involved in a fatal accident when she was arrested Tuesday afternoon on the drug charge, Norwalk Police Detective Sgt. Todd Temple said.
Thornsberry was charged with possession of heroin and trafficking in heroin stemming from the warrant authorities used at her home. Norwalk police worked with the Huron County Sheriff's Office and a regional drug task force in the investigation that started about a month ago.
The Norwalk woman faces up to 18 months in prison and a maximum fine of $5,000 on one felony count of aggravated vehicular homicide.
State troopers have accused Thornsberry of losing control of the Jeep Cherokee she was driving on Northeast Catawba Road on Catawba Island in August. Her niece, Tabitha Picklesimer, was partially ejected from the vehicle and died at the scene.
Thornsberry, whose license was reportedly suspended at the time, was treated and released from a Toledo hospital.
A Sandusky trooper and Ottawa County Assistant Prosecutor Lorrain Croy were unavailable this morning for additional comments. Croy earlier told the Port Clinton News Herald that a judge prohibited attorneys from discussing the details of the case.
Thornsberry was one of two people arrested during the drug bust at her Benedict Avenue home, where police found a "significant amount" of heroin, Temple said. She must post 10 percent of $10,000 before being released from the Huron County Jail.
The suspect's husband, Michael "Dusty" Thornsberry, 30, is wanted for questioning in connection with trafficking heroin, the detective added. Authorities issued a warrant for his arrest Wednesday.
Temple has said "additional arrests are imminent" in the ongoing drug investigation.