Driver In Deadly Bus Crash Indicted on Statutory Rape Charges

March 13, 2019 Updated: March 13, 2019

A former Tennessee bus driver who was convicted of killing six children in a school bus crash has been indicted on multiple charges of rape.

Johnthony Walker, 26, was indicted by a Davidson County Grand Jury on eight counts of aggravated statutory rape and one count of sexual exploitation of a minor, reported News 4.

Johnthony Walker, who was convicted for his part in the deadly Chattanooga bus crash, was indicted last week in Davidson County on statutory rape charges.

WSMV News 4, Nashville 发布于 2019年3月11日周一

Walker was arrested in June 2018 at a 14-year-old’s home in Davidson County after her parents called the police. He was out on bond staying at Nashville at the time while appealing his criminally negligent homicide and assault conviction relating to the 2016 bus crash.

The 26-year-old allegedly admitted to having sex with the girl while he was staying with the family, reported the news station, citing an affidavit. Moreover, during a court hearing in 2018, a sergeant testified that Walker had admitted to having sex with the girl five times.

The sergeant reportedly told the court that Walker appeared to be concerned about the girl’s age and that he found it “repulsive that this has happened.”

The man convicted in the deadly Woodmore school bus crash has been indicted by a Davidson County, Tennessee, grand jury on charges of statutory rape.

Chattanooga Times Free Press 发布于 2019年3月11日周一

Walker told authorities that his relationship with the victim, who lived at the home, began in April or May of 2018. A sex-crimes officer told the grand jury that Walker wrote a one-page apology to the victim as well as turn over his cellphone, which contained text messages and a photo between Walker and the minor, reported Times Free Press.

If found guilty of statutory rape, Walker faces a maximum of 12 years in prison and a fine, not more than $5,000. An aggravated statutory rape charge is used when a victim 13-17 years old and the defendant is 10 years older than the victim.

school bus driver adandons students on the way
Stock image of a school bus. (Michael Schueller/Pixabay)

Deadly Crash

In March last year, Walker was found guilty after the school bus that was carrying 37 children crashed in Chattanooga on Nov. 21, 2016.

Prosecutors said the 25-year-old was using his phone while speeding before he drove into a ditch, hitting a mailbox and electrical pole, finally crashing into a tree, according to the news station. More than 20 of the school children were injured, and six died from the injuries sustained in the crash. The victims aged between 6 and 10.

During the trial, prosecutors argued the bus was driving at a speed of 50 mph, which was too fast to properly navigate on a narrow road. As a result, the bus drifted into an oncoming lane after which Walker overcorrected and the bus crashed, reported the news station.

However, the 25-year-old said he was only traveling 35 mph when he reached the curve of the road and another vehicle encroached his lane, according to Fox news. Chattanooga police officer Joe Warren said there was no evidence of the second vehicle in Walker’s lane.

Prosecutor said the 25-year-old driver was speeding when he drove into a ditch, hitting a mailbox and electrical pole before crashing into a tree.

ABC News 发布于 2018年3月1日周四

The jury found Walker guilty on 27 of 33 charges—six counts of criminally negligent assault, 11 counts of reckless aggravated assault, seven counts of assault, one count of reckless endangerment, one count of reckless driving, and one count of use of a portable electronic device by a school bus driver. He was later sentenced to four years in prison.

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