CLEVELAND – A Cuyahoga Falls man has been cited for crashing his SUV into the Cuyahoga River in the Flats early Monday morning.
Cleveland police said Ryan R. Kilpatrick, 43, drove the wrong way on Elm Street, then drove across the grass, through a fence and into the river around 2 a.m.
He turned himself into police at the scene around 4 p.m. Monday and was cited for reckless operation, failure to control and a one-way violation, according to investigators.
Video posted to social media showed Kilpatrick climbing a ladder out of the water while the SUV floated near the middle of the river, seemingly unaware he crashed into the river. On the video, he was heard asking for a cigarette.
According to police, Kilpatrick reported he thought the street would take him across the river and he remembered swimming to shore after he exited the 2018 Jeep Compass, which then sank.
He was gone by the time first responders arrived.
The Cleveland Division of Fire and Ohio Department of Natural Resources spent hours searching for the location of the vehicle on the bottom of the river Monday.
A private tow service removed the vehicle from the river Monday night.