Oklahoma Child Molester, Ex-Cop Flees PA Crash That Killed Deacon, Leanne Elliott, 32: Police

A former Oklahoma police investigator known for molesting a child and who was out on bail for allegedly strangling his wife at church, was in Pennsylvania for an unknown reason, fleeing from police when he nearly hit someone directing traffic at a crash that killed a decon on Friday, Jan. 13, according to court documents obtained by Daily Voice. 

The map where the crash happened on Route 15 (upper left); the man who led police on a deadly chase, Ed Louis Willingham Jr. (bottom); and Decon Leanne Elliott (right).

The map where the crash happened on Route 15 (upper left); the man who led police on a deadly chase, Ed Louis Willingham Jr. (bottom); and Decon Leanne Elliott (right).

Photo Credit: Facebook/Leanne Elliott(right); Google Maps (Street View, top left); Creek County Sheriff's Office (bottom left)

Edward "Ed" Louis Willingham Jr., 53, of Sapulpa, OK had driven his black 2014 Nissan Sentra through the police barricades— almost hitting a fire police officer who was helping direct traffic near a crash that killed Leanne N. Elliott, 32, of Camp Hill (previously of Maryland and Washington) between Latimore Valley Road/Mountain Road and the exit for Route 94 (Hanover/York Springs) in Latimore Township around 2:30 p.m., court records show. This triggered a police chase, according to a release by Pennsylvania state police. 

As he fled and the chase continued, he slammed his vehicle into two marked state police vehicles, before a precision immobilization technique was used to stop his vehicle— this caused him "non-life-threatening injuries" which required him to be airlifted to York Hospital from the crash at the exit PA 134 - Taneytown Road and Exit: US 15 - Steinwehr Avenue in Cumberland Township around 3:43 p.m., according to state police. 

Willingham was found guilty in 2009 of molesting his former neighbor's 10-year-old daughter back when he worked on the police force in Oklahoma in 2007, court records and numerous media reports detail. He was sentenced to three years in Oklahoma state prison and 12 years of probation, but just as his probation came to an end in July 2021, he was arrested again for allegedly strangling his wife at a church in Sapulpa— causing bruising around her neck, court records obtained by News On 6 detail.

A month later, he was arrested again for violating a protection order, according to the outlet. 

He was out on bail for the PFA violation and abuse charge at the time of this incident according to the Creek County Sheriff's office. 

On Tuesday, January 17, he was released from the hospital in York and booked at the Cumberland County Prison where he was held on $1,000 in bail on charges of speeding, fleeing, and improper license plate, court records obtained by Daily Voice show. His preliminary hearing is set before Magisterial District Judge Vivian Cohick on February 2 at 9:15 a.m., according to his first docket on this deadly incident. 

On Thursday, January 19, Willingham was transferred to the Adams County Prison where he has been held on $10,000 in bail for 7 felonies for fleeing or attempting to elude an officer, aggravated assault - attempted to cause or causes bodily injury to designated individuals (three counts), aggravated assault - attempted to cause or causes bodily injury, aggravated assault - attempted to cause or causes bodily injury with extreme indifference, aggravated assault - fear of imminent serious bodily injury to designated individuals; as well as four summary offenses of obedience to authorized person directing traffic- appropriately attired person, obedience to traffic-control devices, driving at a safe speed, fail to use safety belt,  according to his second court docket. His preliminary for this set of charges is set before Magisterial District Judge Tony J. Little on Feb. 8 at 10 a.m., court records show. 

Additional details about the crash that killed the decon were unavailable as of 4 p.m. on Friday, January 20. 

Leanne Elliott was born and raised in Brookhaven, she was a 2008 graduate of Sun Valley High School, Aston, PA, and a 2012 graduate of Trinity Lutheran College in Everett, WA, with a BA in Children, Youth, and Family Studies and a minor in both Children's and Youth Ministries, according to her obituary published on January 18, 2023. 

"Immediately following college, Leanne began serving for nearly 10 years as Director of Christian Education, Youth and Family Ministries at Grace Lutheran Church in Westminster, MD. During this time, she continued her education at United Lutheran Seminary pursuing her Master's degree. Leanne completed her internship as Vicar at Zion Lutheran Church, Glen Rock, PA. After receiving her Master of Arts Degree in Ministerial Leadership from ULS in May 2022, she was called as Deacon of Faith Formation at Trindle Spring Lutheran Church, Mechanicsburg, PA," as written in her obituary. 

Leanne is survived by "the love of her life, Kelvin Klemm, of Camp Hill, PA;" her parents, Gary and Diane Elliott of Brookhaven, PA, brother Jason, sister-in-law, Jackie, and niece Addison of Elkton, MD; "uncles, aunts, cousins, and the countless lives she touched," as stated in her obituary. 

A visitation followed by a Service of Remembrance was held at Trindle Spring Lutheran Church, 14 State Road, Mechanicsburg, PA 17050 on Friday, January 20, 2023, starting at 10 a.m.

A second visitation followed by a Service of Remembrance will also be held at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, 927 South Providence Road, Wallingford, PA 19086 starting at 9 a.m.

"As an expression of sympathy and in lieu of flowers, contributions in Leanne's memory to either of these churches will be received with love," the family requests in her obituary. 

Editor's Note: this article was updated after additional court documents were obtained. 

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