Johnthony Walker, 24, the bus driver involved in the Chattanooga, Tennessee accident has been formally charged in the deaths of 6 innocent children. Walker has been charged with reckless endangerment and reckless driving and is expected to be slapped with other charges.
It has been revealed that five children died at the scene while the 6th passed away in the hospital. The parents of the deceased have been notified, but the names and ages have not been revealed to the media at this time. There were 35 children on board the school bus when it struck a tree and split in two. There were no other vehicles involved in the accident.
The pupils all attended Woodmere Elementary School and ranged in age from kindergarten to fifth grade. According to Chattanooga Police Chief Fred Fletcher, they believe that Walker was speeding during the deadly crash.
At this time, it is not known if Mr. Walker was drunk or under the influence of any illegal substance during his shift. He has hired a lawyer and has taken a blood test.
If the results show that Walker was intoxicated or high, he might spend between 8 to 30 years in prison. Pictures of injured and traumatized children being consoled have spread on social media, prompting many to offer their condolences to the families mourning.
Americans are flooding to donate blood to help those, who were injured in the accident. There were so many blood donors in line that some have been asked to come back later in the week to make their contribution. Hamilton County Sheriff Jim Hammond said he is devastated by the tragedy, he shared:
“As the agency responsible for the School Resource Officer program in Hamilton County, my staff and I are deeply saddened by the loss of these young children. There are several families in our County that will not have their loved ones come home tonight and we as a community will feel the sadness and hurt from this event for a very long time to come. I am very proud of the Chattanooga firefighters, police officers, and Hamilton County EMS personnel who helped to rescue the injured. I am also very proud of the members of the HCSO who worked along side our city first responders.”
Fletcher said the accident is like a horrible nightmare, he added:
“Our hearts go out, as well as the heart’s of all the people around me, to the family, the neighborhood, the school and all the people involved in this. We assure you we’re doing everything we can to help everybody be as safe as they can, get the care they need and get the support they need.”
Some commenters have used this tragedy to go after bad bus drivers.