The driver involved in a Tennessee bus crash last November that left six children dead was indicted by a Hamilton County grand jury Wednesday on multiple vehicular homicide charges.
Johnthony Walker, 24, faces six vehicular homicides charges along with four counts of reckless aggravated assault, one count of reckless endangerment, one count of reckless driving, and one count of use of portable electronic device by a school bus driver, WRCB-TV reported.
Walker will be arraigned on the charges in a hearing on March 24.
The Chattanooga Police Department charged that Walker was driving a bus with Woodmore Elementary School children from 50 to 53 miles per hour in a 30 mph residential area when he went off the road and slammed into a tree, WRCB-TV reported.
Authorities said 37 children were on the bus at the time of the accident.
The Tennessean identified the children killed as 10-year-old Zyanna Harris, 9-year-old Cor'Dayja Jones, 9-year-old Zoie Nash, 8-year-old Keonte Wilson, 6-year-old D'Myunn Brown and 6-year-old Zyaira Mateen. The newspaper reported that more than 20 other students were injured.
According to an investigation by state and federal authorities, students had lodged complaints about Walker's driving before, according to The Tennessean. The Associated Press reported that records released by the school district included two written complaints by students.
"The bus driver drives fast," one student wrote earlier before the accident, according to the AP. "It feels like the bus is going to flip over... When someone is in the aisle he stops the bus and he makes people hit their heads."
Carlis Shackelford, a behavioral specialist at Woodmore Elementary, rode on the bus Nov. 2 after Walker complained that the students were not listening to him, The Associated Press reported.
Shackelford wrote that one student cursed at the bus driver about the heat, making Walker visibly upset. Walker told Shackelford that he had another job and the bus-driving job was part-time for him, the AP said.
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