Author: CBS News

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Truck driver indicted in church bus crash that killed 13

The driver of the pickup truck that collided with a Texas church van, killing 13 people, has been indicted on multiple charges, including intoxication manslaughter.

CBS News

UVALDE, Texas – A grand jury has indicted a Texas man whom authorities accuse of causing a traffic collision that killed 13 people in a minibus returning from a church retreat[1] in March.

The Uvalde County district attorney’s office said Thursday that Jack Young, 20, was indicted Monday on multiple charges, including intoxication manslaughter and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon causing serious bodily injury.

Young turned himself in Wednesday and was being held on a $380,000 bond, District Attorney Daniel Kindred said in a statement emailed Thursday.

Jail records don’t indicate whether Young, of Leakey, Texas, has an attorney.

13 killed after truck crashes into church bus

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13 killed after truck crashes into church bus

Federal officials are investigating a devastating head-on crash between a bus and a pick-up truck in Texas. Thirteen people were killed when the …

A National Transportation Safety Board report says Young told investigators he was checking his phone for a text when the crash happened March 29, near San Antonio. He said he had taken prescription drugs before the crash and investigators found marijuana in his pickup, the report said.

An NTSB review of a 14-minute video shot by a motorist trailing Young’s pickup prior to the crash showed Young’s truck cross the double yellow center line 19 times, the solid white shoulder lines 37 times and the grass shoulder at least five times, according to the report.

The driver and 12 passengers on the bus from First Baptist Church of New Braunfels were killed. One passenger survived. All were senior adult members of the church.

At one point, the video even shows the pickup driving on the wrong side of the road. Investigators estimated the truck was traveling from 67 to 71 mph in a 70-mph zone, based on an analysis of the video.

Officials from Uvalde and Real counties confirmed they had received phone calls about a white pickup driving erratically and crossing the highway shortly before the wreck.

Young was not wearing his seatbelt while most if not all of the 14 church bus occupants had been wearing theirs, the NTSB said.

The wreck happened on a two-lane highway about 75 miles west of San Antonio.

An affidavit from a Texas Department of Public Safety trooper seeking a blood test for a toxicology report said there was probable cause to believe Young was intoxicated during the collision because Young acknowledged ingesting the prescription drugs, including clonazepam and the generic forms of Lexapro and Ambien.

© 2017 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

© 2017 CBS Interactive Inc.

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NTSB focuses on 2 factors that led to fatal Texas church bus crash

A witness said a pickup truck driver was texting while driving when he collided with a Texas church van, killing 13 people on board.

CBS News

DALLAS — Federal investigators are trying to determine whether a pickup driver’s texting and drug use contributed to a head-on collision with a church bus[1] that killed its driver and 12 passengers, according to a preliminary report released Thursday.

The National Transportation Safety Board’s report does not state a probable cause for the March 29 crash on U.S. 83 near Garner State Park, about 75 miles west of San Antonio. However, it lists what investigators are focusing on as they reconstruct the events that led to the crash.

13 killed after truck crashes into church bus

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CBS This Morning

13 killed after truck crashes into church bus

Federal officials are investigating a devastating head-on crash between a bus and a pick-up truck in Texas. Thirteen people were killed when the …

Truck driver Jack Dillon Young, 20, and one passenger of the bus owned by the First Baptist Church of New Braunfels were the sole survivors of the crash, which happened as the senior adult members of the church were returning home from a church retreat.

The report notes an NTSB review of witness Jody Kuchler’s 14-minute video of the pickup prior to the crash that showed Young’s truck cross the double yellow center line 19 times, the solid white shoulder lines 37 times and the grass shoulder at least five times.

At one point, the video even shows the truck driving on the wrong side of the road. Investigators estimated the truck was traveling at from 67 to 71 mph in a 70-mph speed zone, based on an analysis of the video.

The report says Young told investigators that he was checking his phone for a text when the crash happened. He also said he had taken prescription drugs before the crash, and investigators found marijuana in the truck. Investigators are awaiting results of toxicology tests.

“The noise of the crash was very loud and everything was in slow motion,” Kuchler said by phone to CBS News in March.

“He said, ‘I’m sorry, ‘I’m sorry, I was texting,’” Kuchler said. “And I said, ‘Son, do you realize what you just did?’ He just said, ‘I’m sorry, I’m sorry,’ but he wasn’t crying — he wasn’t none of that.”

Kuchler made a frantic call to the Real County Sheriff Department: “I’m following this guy, he’s in a white Dodge dually. He’s all over the road. Both sides. Somebody needs to stop this guy.”

They took pictures and recorded Young as several cars swerved out of the truck’s path.

“He’s gonna hit someone head-on or he’s gonna kill his own damn self,” Kuchler says on the 911 call. “Somebody needs to get this guy off the road.”

The report says the tuck was approaching the end of a 4-degree curve to the right when it crossed into the opposing lane and slammed into the left front corner of the bus. The bus driver and front row passenger were wearing shoulder belts, while the passengers behind them were all wearing lap belts. Young was using no seatbelt.

No mechanical defects have been found in either vehicle. No crash-related data have been retrieved from any vehicle devices capable of recording and transmitting such data, the report states.

The crash remains under investigation, and the NTSB said it is working alongside the Texas Department of Public Safety, reports CBS affiliate KENS-TV[2] in San Antonio.  

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Thirteen people were killed when a pickup collided with a church bus in Texas on Wed., March 29, 2017.

KENS-TV

© 2017 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

© 2017 CBS Interactive Inc.

References

  1. ^ head-on collision with a church bus (www.cbsnews.com)
  2. ^ reports CBS affiliate KENS-TV (www.kens5.com)
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Incredible video shows car being dragged by truck on freeway

CAJON PASS, Calif. — A driver says he is lucky to be alive after his car became wedged under a truck and was dragged four miles on a Southern California freeway, CBS Los Angeles reports[1].

Cellphone video captured the unbelievable sight of a maroon Nissan Maxima stuck under a truck hauling 50,000 pounds of carrots that continued driving up the remote canyon pass Wednesday afternoon. The driver in the sedan can be seen waving his hands for help behind a shattered windshield and crushed hood.

A California Highway Patrol statement said the truck was driving 30 mph northbound in the truck lane when it began to move into the left lane. The Maxima, while trying to pass into the left lane also, collided with the truck and became lodged, according to the CHP.

Witnesses said they thought the car had been dragged for miles, but CHP officials said the Maxima had been dragged for “approximately .7 of a mile.”

Brian Steimke posted the Facebook video, in which you can hear him saying in disbelief, “Look at that. Oh my God.”

Other drivers honked to get the truck driver’s attention, and one finally got in front to stop the truck.

In this picture from a video posted on Facebook, a car was dragged by a big rig on a California highway.

Steimke approached the truck driver — identified by the California Highway Patrol as 62-year-old Pete Edward Maestas of Bakersfield — and asked him why he was driving so far.

“Dude, the guy was underneath your car!” Steimke is heard saying.

When Maestas said he did not know that, Steimke says “What do you mean you didn’t know it, dude! He’s on your truck!”

The driver of the sedan — identified as 34-year-old Javier A. Diaz Jr. of Oak Hills — is just a bit sore from the collision and is happy to be home with his family.

According to the CHP, this crash is not considered a criminal incident. Officers on the scene did not detect any signs of impairment on the truck driver, and said the driver’s log book appeared to be in compliance.

Neither driver requested medical care, CHP officials said.

© 2017 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved.

References

  1. ^ CBS Los Angeles reports (losangeles.cbslocal.com)