Blacklick woman who killed family in crash sentenced to at least 32 years in prison

Downed freeway divider cables are visible following a crash on Interstate 71 North in March 2021 that killed a family of four from Northwest Columbus. A pickup truck (seen at right) traveled through the grass median and the cable barrier and struck an SUV (not in this picture) carrying the Northwest Columbus family. The SUV bounced off a southbound tractor-trailer, flipped over and caught fire. The pickup truck also caught fire.

A 26-year-old Blacklick woman who crashed her car into another on Interstate 71 in March 2021, killing a family of four, will serve more than 30 years in prison.

Laylah Bordeau will serve a sentence between 32 and 36 years, said Judge James P. Schuck Friday in Delaware County Common Pleas Court.

Bordeau was convicted of eight counts of aggravated vehicular homicide on Wednesday for the fatal crash.

"This has been a long and difficult case," Schuck said.

A Toyota RAV4 was in the southbound lanes near mile marker 125 on I-71 just before 8 p.m. March 29 when Bordeau's northbound pickup truck lost control, crossed through the grass median and cable barrier and struck the car head-on. The four people in the RAV4 died at the crash scene after the car exploded in a fireball.

Killed in the crash were Abigail Sperl, 38; Brian Sperl, 42; Lincoln Sperl, 11; and Bastion Sperl, 14. The family lived in Northwest Columbus, not far from Powell, and the children attended Worthington schools.

A witness pulled Bordeau from her vehicle. She suffered serious injuries.

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Family members address the court 

Family members of the Sperls addressed the court, including Abigail's brother Jonathan Yount. He said when he heard the news that night, he immediately drove from his residence in New Jersey to Ohio. Yount said he and Abigail had a bond since she was a kid.

"She was my person," he said. "We could share the good and the bad."

Brian's sister Kelley Murnen also came up to the podium, and teared up as she talked about Lincoln.

"Lincoln was my buddy," she said. "He was a wise soul in an 11-year-old body."

"Four people who were happy and healthy are gone."

Later, Bordeau made an apology to the family.

"I am extremely regretful and remorseful," she said through tears. "I will never forgive myself ... If I could trade places and bring them back to you, I would."

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Bordeau had drugs in her system at the time of crash

According to medical records, Bordeau had told authorities that she had been a fentanyl and Xanax user for years. Bordeau has claimed to have seizures even before the accident. Medical personnel have said the seizures were caused by withdrawal.

Bordeau had 92 nanograms of fentanyl in her blood at the time of the crash, according to a criminal complaint from last year.

"This has always been about choices," said Delaware County assistant prosecutor Payton Thompson. "She could've slowed down, she could've stopped."

Alex Hoffman, Bordeau's court-appointed attorney, said that Bordeau has a history of using drugs because she was sexually abused as a child, which caused her to leave home at age 15. He said she used drugs to escape her trauma.

However, Schuck said that her drug use has caused serious harm and that Bordeau hasn't seem remorseful about her actions.

"Before today, I heard nothing in her attitude ... she has not reflected any form of remorse or sympathy," he said.


This article originally appeared on The Columbus Dispatch: Woman who killed family of four on I-71 sentenced to at least 32 years