Authorities Say DashCam Proves Trucker Was Distracted Before Crash That Killed Child
Rochester, IN – A trucker has been charged with reckless homicide following a crash that took the life of a six-month-old boy and severely injured a two-year-old girl last month along an Indiana highway.
According to the Indiana State Police (ISP), Andrew King, 35, of Rochester, IN, was arrested at his home last week following an investigation into a crash that occurred on Monday, May 10 at approximately 3:58 p.m.
Investigators determined King was distracted while driving a 2016 Volvo semi-tractor, pulling an empty semi-trailer, northbound on U.S. 31 approaching a red light at Miami County Road 100 North.
King did not stop for the red light and rear-ended a Toyota Corolla, pushing it into a Chevrolet Malibu.
The Corolla was driven by Sarah Wallace, 32, South Bend, IN, with her six-month-old son Leo and 2-year-old daughter Cecilia in the backseat.
Leo sustained fatal injuries while Cecilia was airlifted from the scene with life-threatening injuries.
According to an update from ISP, Cecilia has since undergone multiple surgeries and remains in the hospital.
Wallace also suffered serious injuries and was flown from the crash site.
The driver of the Malibu, Christine Wells, 75, of Rochester, IN, was treated at a nearby hospital for non-life-threatening injuries and was released the day of the accident.
King was uninjured.
Prosecutors Use Dash Cam Video Against King
A probable cause affidavit filed with the Miami County Court alleges King told investigators he heard something rattling in his cab shortly before the crash.
He claimed he looked away from the road for approximately two-to-three seconds and when he looked back to the road he was unable to avoid smashing into the Corolla.
According to prosecutors, dash camera footage from King’s big rig reveals he was looking out the driver’s side window for 33 seconds leading up to the crash.
King Accused of Lying About Accident History
King is also facing a misdemeanor charge of false informing after authorities allege he lied to them when asked about his prior accident history.
Court documents indicate King told investigators he had been in a few accidents with the most recent being six months earlier.
However, ISP indicated it has investigated two crashes involving King already this year with the latest occurring only two days before the fatal accident in which he is charged.
King was determined to be at-fault in both of those incidents.
In a crash that occurred on January 25, ISP said King failed to yield the right of way and pulled into the path of a passenger vehicle on U.S. 31.
In another accident on May 8, ISP said King backed his big rig into a parked car.
If convicted on the reckless homicide charge, King could be sentenced to one to six years in prison and ordered to pay up to $10,000 in fines.