The Aegis

Police: One dead after three-vehicle crash on Route 23 in northern Harford County

Maryland State Police are investigating a crash in northern Harford County that left a 43-year-old man dead and closed Route 23 for about 3 hours Thursday morning.

Troopers from the Bel Air barrack responded to the crash at the intersection of Route 23 and White Hall Road around 5:30 a.m.


Police said the preliminary investigation showed a Dodge van, driven by Michael Ciarpella, 64, of Jarrettsville, was stopped on northbound Route 23 preparing to make a left turn onto White Hall Road, when it was struck from behind by a Chevrolet Astro Van, being driven by James McDonald, 66, of Fallston.

That collision forced the Dodge van into the path of a Ford van, driven by Joseph Wheeler, 31, of Stewartstown, Pennsylvania, traveling south on Route 23, which struck the Dodge, police said.


The passenger of the Dodge van, identified as Mark Griffifths, 43, of Monkton, was transported by ambulance to York Memorial Hospital where he was pronounced deceased.

Ciarpella was flown to the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore by Maryland State Police helicopter. His condition was not immediately available.

Wheeler and McDonald where the lone occupants of their respective vehicles and refused treatment.

No charges have been filed at this time as troopers continue their investigation, police said.

The Harford County Sheriff’s Office, the Maryland Department of Transportation State Highway Administration and the Jarrettsville Volunteer Fire Company assisted state police at the crash scene.