State’s Attorney Jaymi Sterling announced today that a St. Mary’s County Jury found Defendant Aleksander A. Ivanchev, 40, of Lexington Park, MD, guilty of two counts of criminally negligent manslaughter for the deaths of Melody Russell and Shawn Bailey following a July 2021 collision in Charlotte Hall, MD.

Sterling thanked members of the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office for their investigation and Senior Assistant State’s Attorney Laura Caspar, who prosecuted the case on behalf of the citizens of St. Mary’s County. 

The defendant will be held without bond pending sentencing, which has been postponed to a later date.

 On July 30, 2021, at approximately 11:08 a.m. deputies from the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office responded to the reported motor vehicle collision with a vehicle on fire in the 30000 block of Three Notch Road, at the intersection of Golden Beach Road, in Charlotte Hall. Deputies arrived on the scene and located one vehicle engulfed in flames, with at least one occupant inside the vehicle. Members of the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office Collision Reconstruction Unit responded to the scene and continued the investigation.

Preliminary investigation determined a 2008 Subaru Outback operated by Aleksandar Andreev Ivanchev, age 38 of Lexington Park, was traveling northbound on Three Notch Road at a high rate of speed. Ivanchev continued through a solid red light and struck a 2005 Ford Escape, which was traveling from Golden Beach Road through the intersection of Three Notch Road, with a solid green light. Upon impact, the Ford Escape became engulfed in flames. The Ford Escape was occupied by two individuals, who were pronounced deceased on the scene. The identities of the victims are being withheld pending positive identification. Ivanchev suffered incapacitating injuries and was transported from the scene to an area trauma center for treatment.

The Honorable Joseph Stanalonis presided over the case.


David M. Higgins II, Publisher/Editor

David M. Higgins was born in Baltimore and grew up in Southern Maryland. He has had a passion for journalism since high school. After spending many years in the Hospitality Industry he began working in...

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