HIGH-SPEED MURDER: Hot Rod Ivanchev killed a young engaged couple when he blew through a red light; faces two counts of murder in 2022 trial

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HIGH-SPEED MURDER: Hot Rod Ivanchev killed killed a young engaged couple when he blew through a red light; faces two counts of murder in 2022 trial

UPDATE: Grand Jury issues indictments for two counts of murder against Aleksander Ivanchev for killing two people in his road rage on Rt. 5

The murder trial for Ivanchev is set for February 15, 2022, before Circuit Court Judge Joseph Stanalonis.

Circuit Court Judge Joseph Stanalonis. THE CHESAPEAKE TODAY photo



Melody Ann Russell, 29, of Clements, MD, passed away on July 30, 2021, in Charlotte Hall, MD. Born on April 2, 1992, in Leonardtown, MD, she was the loving daughter of John Steven Russell and Patricia Ann Russell of Clements, MD.

Melody was a lifelong St. Mary’s County resident and graduated from St. Mary’s Ryken in 2010. She attended the University of Maryland Global Campus and graduated in 2021 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration. Melody worked as a baker at McKay’s in Leonardtown, MD for eight years.

She enjoyed knitting, painting, drawing, and crafting, as well as painting old furniture and restoring it. Melody liked to go thrift store shopping, collect sea glass on the beach, and play tennis.

Melody was to be married to Shawn Douglas Bailey on November 27, 2021. She met him at work at McKay’s and they fell madly in love. They were engaged after three months and planned to remodel the house next to her parents, John and Patricia. The couple planned to have it finished for their honeymoon and live there as husband and wife. Both proud Catholics, they were religious. With their photos all over the house, Melody could not wait to marry Shawn. She loved her family; aunts, uncles, and cousins. She was very crafty, and a sweet, smart, and kind-hearted person. Melody loved the tennis team that she was on at St. Mary’s Ryken and going to David Cook concerts with Melissa Rosa, her maid of honor and best friend. Her friends Mary Depperschmidt and Claire Kayser were her bridesmaids-to-be; they were like the sisters she never had. Shawn and Melody were planning a beautiful life together. Now two lives cut short are together in Heaven forever, both young and in love.

Shawn Douglas Bailey, 27, of Loveville, MD, passed away on July 30, 2021, in Charlotte Hall, MD. Born on November 15, 1993, in Leonardtown, MD, he was the loving son of Joseph Alton Bailey III of Williston, FL, and Dolly Lynn Green of Mechanicsville, MD.

Shawn was a lifelong St. Mary’s County resident and graduated from Chopticon High School in 2012. He worked as a Produce Manager at McKay’s in Leonardtown, MD for two years.

For Shawn, life was an adventure. An aspiring banjo player, a proficient marksman, a collector of antiques, and a self-taught historian, Shawn had a good heart and helped people whenever he could. He had a passion for wildlife and enjoyed spending time in nature. Shawn had found true love in his life when Melody Russell accepted his hand in marriage. Their love for each other will live on forever.


CHARLOTTE HALL, MD. – Melody Ann Russell and Shawn Douglas Bailey were killed by a man with a troubled past of domestic violence when he crashed his car in a T-bone style crash at speeds believed to be over 100 mph when running a red light at the intersection of Rt. 5 and Golden Beach Road in Charlotte Hall, Md.

St. Mary’s Sheriff Tim Cameron says that on July 30, 2021, at approximately 11:08 a.m. deputies from the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Department responded to the crash of a vehicle fully involved in flames, at the intersection of Rt. 5 and Golden Beach Road, in Charlotte Hall. Deputies located one vehicle engulfed in flames, with at least one occupant inside the vehicle. Members of the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office Collision Reconstruction Unit responded to the scene and continued the investigation.

Preliminary investigation determined a 2008 Subaru Outback operated by Aleksandar Andreev Ivanchev, 38, (D0B 9/25/1982) of 18526 WOOD ROAD, Lexington Park, Maryland, was traveling northbound on Rt. 5 in Charlotte Hall, Md., at a high rate of speed. Ivanchev continued through a solid red light and struck a 2005 Ford Escape, which was traveling from Golden Beach Road through the intersection of Three Notch Road, with a solid green light. Upon impact, the Ford Escape became engulfed in flames. The Ford Escape was occupied by two individuals, who were pronounced deceased on the scene.

Sheriff Tim Cameron reports that the identities of the victims are being withheld pending positive identification. Ivanchev suffered incapacitating injuries and was transported from the scene to an area trauma center for treatment.

Police say that speed and failing to obey a traffic control device appear to be contributing factors in the collision. Anyone who witnessed the collision or events leading to the collision that have not already provided a statement are asked to contact Sergeant Sheena Tirpak at (301) 475-4200 extension 78051 or by email at Sheena.Tirpak@stmarysmd.com.

The driving record of Ivanchev, according to Maryland Court records, reveals that he was cited in 2018 for speeding on Willows Road, south of Lexington Park, and the charge was put on the Stet Docket by St. Mary’s States Attorney Richard Fritz.  The charge was set aside on the condition of eight hours of community service, as of March 18, 2019.

Court records show that the St. Mary’s County Land Use and Growth Management Office cited Ivanchev multiple times for failing to be licensed in tree removal.  St. Mary’s States Attorney Richard Fritz dropped the charges on May 25, 2021.  Ivanchev formerly lived on the family farm in Valley Lee owned by Fritz.  Ivanchev operated a business known as Potomac Trailers which he reported to the State of Maryland was located on the Fritz family farm and later moved to the commercial building located opposite of the Leonardtown sewage facility on Van Wert Lane.

Ivanchev purchased his home located south of St. Mary’s City in 2013 for $140,000.


Violation of Protective OrderSheriff Tim Cameron reported this arrest of Ivanchev in 2018:

On February 5, 2018, St. Mary’s Sheriff’s Department Dep. Payne responded to the 42000 block of Redgate Farm Lane, in Leonardtown, in reference to a protective order violation.  Investigation revealed Aleksandar Andreev Ivanchev, 35, of Lexington Park, violated a valid protective order by sending a message to a protected party of the order.  Ivanchev was arrested and charged with Violate Exparte/Protective Order.

Ivanchev was found guilty by Judge Christy Holt Chesser of violating the court’s order to stay away from a victim in a case of child abuse domestic violence in 2018.  Judge Chesser imposed the following conditions on Ivanchev:

1. Appear in Court When Notified to do So, 05/01/2018, Active 05/01/2018

2. Attend Complete Alcohol Drug Program, St. Mary’s Parole and Probation, Attend and successfully complete [ ] alcohol [ ] drug [ ] alcohol and drug treatment [ ] education program evaluation, treatment, if needed, 05/01/2018, Active 05/01/2018

3. Do Not Illegally Possess, Use, or Sell any Narcotic, 05/01/2018, Active 05/01/2018

4. Get Permission From Court Before Owning Dangerous Weapon, 05/01/2018, Active 05/01/2018

5. Get Permission from Supervisor Before Changing Address etc., 05/01/2018, Active 05/01/2018

6. Have no Contact With, Have no contact with Hunter Phoenix Spalding, 05/01/2018, Active 05/01/2018

7. Notify Supervisor if Charged with a Criminal Offense,, 05/01/2018, Active 05/01/2018

8. Obey all Laws, 05/01/2018, Active 05/01/2018

9. Other, Abide by protective order complete abuser intervention program, 05/01/2018, Active 05/01/2018

10. Pay all Fines, Costs, Restitution and Fees, Pay all fines, costs, restitution, and fees as ordered by the Court or as directed by your supervising agent through a payment schedule., 05/01/2018, Active 05/01/2018

11. Permit your Supervising Agent to Visit your Home, 05/01/2018, Active 05/01/2018

12. Report/ Follow your Supervisor’s lawful instructions, 05/01/2018, Active 05/01/2018

13. Submit Complete Mental Health Treatment, 05/01/2018, Active 05/01/2018

14. Submit Random Urinalysis, 05/01/2018, Active 05/01/2018

15. Totally Abstain from Alcohol and Drugs, 05/01/2018, Active 05/01/2018

16. Work or Attend School Regularly, 05/01/2018, Active 05/01/2018

In addition, repeated enforcement actions in St. Mary’s Circuit Court were filed due to demands for payment of child support.

Following the investigation into the crash, the findings will be brought to St. Mary’s States Attorney Richard Fritz for determination of charges which could include two counts of vehicular manslaughter and multiple traffic charges.


Photos taken at the scene by Hollywood VFD and Mechanicsville VFD

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