Hartke Formally Charged In Greene County Triple-Fatal Accident

MASON HARTKE Photo: Indiana State Police

MASON HARTKE
Photo: Indiana State Police

Bloomfield (NNDC) – Mason Hartke was formally arrigned in Greene Superior Court Tuesday morning; charged in the deaths of the Rinehart family of Newburgh last month.

Indiana State Police say the 19-year old Jasper man was driving with a blood alcohol content of at least .16% when his pickup truck crashed into the Rinehart’s car in the early morning hours of November 13th.

The family’s car struck a deer on I-69 in Greene County (Mile Marker 103) near the Monroe County line and pulled off to the shoulder of the interstate.

A short time later, ISP says Hartke’s truck crashed into the car killing 17-year old Sophie Rinehart, her dad and her paternal grandmother.

Greene Superior Court Judge Dena Martin Tuesday formally charged Hartke with three counts of Operating a Vehicle while Intoxicated, Causing Death and three counts of Reckless Homicide.  All six charges are Level 5 felonies… punishable by up to six years in prison for each count if convicted.

Hartke is free on a $60,000 cash bond. Martin set a pre-trial hearing in the matter for 2:30 February 13th.

Also killed were Sophie’s dad 46-year old David Rinehart, a pastor at a Newburgh church and her 74-year old grandmother, Ruth Rinehart.

Another passenger in the Rinehart car, 18-year old Josie Rinehart, Sophie’s sister survived the crash.

Hartke suffered a broken arm.

The Rineharts were returning from the Bands of America Grand National Championships in Indianapolis.  The night before Sophie Rinehart performed with the Castle High School marching band at Lucas Oil Stadium.  Sophie was a featured vocal soloist in Castle’s performance in Indianapolis.

Ruth Rinehart was a retired music teacher with the Evansville-Vanderburgh School Corp. music teacher.

NewsNow Dubois County has learned that on June 18th, Hartke, a 2016 graduate of Southridge High School, was cited for possession of alcohol by a minor by an Indiana excise officer while at a concert at the Klipsch Music Center in Noblesville.

He was not arrested, but was required to enter an alcohol diversion program for the incident according to court records.

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