COURT DOCS: Witnesses say semi-truck driver ran red light, striking school bus in Warsaw
WARSAW, Ind. (WPTA) - Probable cause documents obtained by 21Alive on Tuesday are providing more details on the crash involving a semi-truck and a school bus in Warsaw that left 16 students injured Saturday evening.
BACKGROUND: Semi driver arrested for OWI after crashing into a school bus critically injuring at least 3 students
Police say the semi-truck driver, 58-year-old Victor Santos of Brooklyn, New York, is facing 26 felony charges in the crash.
Court documents say Santos was driving the semi-truck along U.S. 30 in Warsaw when he says a “school bus came out in from of him” and he struck it. Police say when Santos was asked to exit the truck, he stumbled and officers say they noticed an odor of alcohol on his breath.
While Santos was booked into the Kosciusko County Jail, documents say a breath test showed he had a blood alcohol content level of .13%, above the state’s legal limit of .08%.
Police interviewed two people who were traveling behind Santos, who said they sped up because of his driving behavior. They say Santos then caught up to them at a high rate of speed, and forced them off the road when he passed them.
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The two say they called and reported Santos as a reckless driver, continuing to follow him. Documents say they two saw Santos approach a red light at the intersection of US 30 and Center Street in Warsaw when he braked momentarily, but then ran the red light and struck the school bus that had the right-of-way.
Documents say police spoke with two other witnesses who saw Santos speeding and run the red light, hitting the bus. They say he did not attempt to swerve to avoid the collision.
The crash caused the bus to overturn, injuring 16 students, three critically. A total of 23 students and two adult coaches from Saint Ignatius Prep’s hockey team were on board at the time, in addition to the bus driver. A police report says at least one of the students had been ejected from the bus, and the injuries spanned from critical to minor. They say the students’ ages range from 14 to 17 years old.
Court documents also note that Santos is a registered sex offender in New York, having been convicted of rape around 1999.
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