Updated October 31, 2018 at 3:36 a.m.
Authorities have released the name of the driver, Alyssa Shepherd, 24, of Rochester. Shepherd was arrested and charged Tuesday with three counts of reckless homicide and a misdemeanor count of passing a school bus when a signal arm is extended. Indiana law requires motorists to stop when a school bus is picking up or dropping off children. The students had the right of way as they crossed the street. She works as Children’s Director at Faith Outreach, a Foursquare Gospel Church in Rochester.
11-year-old Maverik Lowe was airlifted to Parkview Hospital in Fort Wayne with life-threatening injuries. There has been no word of his status as of yet, but he was not related to the children who were killed in the accident. The family has created a GoFundMe page, stating after being thrown over 30 ft, the boy suffered broken ribs, busted kneecap, fractures in his arm and wrist and his leg is in pins and rods. Lowe also had plastic surgery to “put his face back together” and has slipped disks in his spine and his neck. If you would like to donate you can click here.
The original story was published on October 30, 2018 at 12:23 a.m. It continues below.
Three children were hit and killed by a vehicle while boarding a school bus early Tuesday morning in Fulton County. According to authorities, the incident occurred at 7:30 a.m. on 4600 N. State Road 25 near Rochester, 100 miles north of Indianapolis
According to reports, four children were crossing a two-lane road from a mobile home park to get to their school bus when they were struck by a Toyota Tacoma truck. Preliminary investigation showed the bus was in the northbound lane of State Road 25 with its emergency lights flashing and its stop-sign arm out when the children were struck by the southbound truck. The three children who died have been identified as two twin 6-year-old boys, Xzavier and Mason Ingle, and their 9-year-old sister, Alivia Stahl. Visible images of the accident show the truck with a heavy front-end damage at the scene.
At the time of the incident, there were no children on the school bus, but one other injury was also reported and the child was airlifted to Fort Wayne Hospital. The condition of the 11-year-old boy is still unknown but authorities stated he did suffer many broken bones. Indiana State Police are currently investigating the case, but want to remind drivers that we all have a responsibility to share the road, in a safe manner.
Sgt. Tony Slocum from the Peru Police Department stated,
“I haven’t seen first responders and troopers cry in a long time. When the children’s father had to make identification of his children, that was just gut-wrenching. We saw tears today and our hearts just go out to them because most of us have children and we can’t imagine the pain that he felt today. It was heartbreaking It’s still heartbreaking.”
All children attend Mentone Elementary School. The school spoke on the incident, saying they have deployed all school counselor to meet the emotional needs of students, staff, and parents. They are currently waiting to learn more confined details of the students. One witness said her grandchild was supposed to be the bus stop as well but changed plans last minute to keep them from being at the scene.
Police are interviewing the 24-year-old woman who was driving the pickup and is fully cooperating with the police. No charges have been filed against her.