Operations

Truck Driver Cleared on Baltimore Limo Crash

Posted on December 12, 2008 by LCT Staff - Also by this author - About the author

DUNDALK, Md. - Nearly three months ago, bride-to-be Sunshine Royston was killed in Baltimore the night of the Patapsco High School graduate’s bachelorette party when a tractor-trailer made a left turn into her limousine.

The Baltimore City State’s Attorney’s Office, which investigated the case, last month determined there was no “gross negligence” on the part of the driver.

“The highway reconstruction report did not support a charge of [vehicular] manslaughter,” said Marty Burns, spokesperson for the state’s attorney’s office.

Several factors are considered for vehicular manslaughter, including drinking, speeding, force of impact, erratic driving, fleeing the scene, skid marks, damage to vehicles and the environment of the crash scene, according to Burns.

A Nov. 19 letter to Victoria Bull, Royston’s mother, explained the lack of criminal charges. Mark Cohen, assistant to the state’s attorney’s Homicide Division chief, wrote that there was not a sufficient legal basis to charge anyone with automobile manslaughter.

“The police investigation reveals an absence of gross negligence. Gross negligence is a necessary element of the crime of automobile manslaughter,” Cohen wrote.

Manslaughter by vehicle is punishable with 10 years in prison and/or a $5,000 fine.

“Driving an 18-wheeler in the city in the middle of the night, making a left-hand turn into a limousine sounds like negligence to me,” said Fred Thiess, Royston’s maternal grandfather and president of the Wells-McCommas Citizens Improvement Association.

The tractor-trailer’s driver may face traffic charges not subject to jail time, Burns said. Traffic charges are pending and are expected to be determined within the week.

“I just want [the driver] to understand the consequences of his behavior. I don’t think he’ll understand that when he stands in front of a traffic court judge,” Thiess said. “He needs to be reminded that what happened, can happen.”

Burns said the Baltimore City State’s Attorney’s Offices sees 20 to 30 vehicular manslaughter cases a year. In 2007, nine amounted to charges resulting in jail time.

Thiess said the fact that the driver’s toxicology report showed no drugs or alcohol is worse: “I know it was an accident and he didn’t mean to hurt anyone, but having said that, I know it was extremely reckless.”

Pennsylvania resident Cameron Ingool was pregnant and severely injured in the accident in the 4000 block of E. Monument Street. Her jaw is still wired shut and she will have to go in for another surgery after the holidays, Thiess said.

Royston, 28, had been living with her fiance, Joe Hillegas, and their three children in Dallastown, Pa., for two years. Makencie, at seven months old the youngest of the children, was still being breast-fed at the time of Royston’s death on Sept. 13.

“The whole family has had a lot of trouble with this,” Thiess said.

The community, in the midst of the tragedy, has been “fantastic,” Thiess said. “You see the best in people at the worst of times,” he said.

Source: The Dundalk Eagle

View comments or post a comment on this story. (0 Comments)

More News

Go Riteway Celebrates 60 Years In Bus Business

The Wisconsin company started with just four school buses and now has 1,000 vehicles serving several ground transportation sectors.

Colorado Operator Buys Affiliate To Widen Service Region

eNews Exclusive: B-Line Express in Vail will now cover even more ground in the retail-heavy state.

Why Uber Can't Be Fixed And Must Be Shut Down

Analysis: The TNC's lower costs brought lower prices, with resulting popularity and growth. But its use of noncommercial cars was unlawful from the start.

Empire CLS Featured In Meetings + Events Magazine

The article describes the chauffeured transportation provider's newest additions to its fleet: 56-passenger motorcoaches.

Unique II Brings Its Luxury Service To Florida FBO

The New Jersey company expands its chauffeured experience to  private charter jet clientele at Opa-locka.

See More News

Facebook Comments ()

Comments (0)

Post a Comment

Submit

Blog

See More

LCT Store

LCT Magazine - July 2017 $12.95 COVER STORY: * Why These Titans Work So Hard to Give it Away * *



Connect

Experience the three annual industry events for networking for business, showcasing vehicles and products, and getting the tools for success.

Read About Your Region

What’s Happening Near You?
Click on any state to see the latest industry news and events in that region.

More From The World's Largest Fleet Publisher

Automotive Fleet

The Car and truck fleet and leasing management magazine

Business Fleet

managing 10-50 company vehicles

Fleet Financials

Executive vehicle management

Government Fleet

managing public sector vehicles & equipment

TruckingInfo.com

THE COMMERCIAL TRUCK INDUSTRY’S MOST IN-DEPTH INFORMATION SOURCE

Work Truck Magazine

The number 1 resource for vocational truck fleets

Metro Magazine

Serving the bus and passenger rail industries for more than a century

Schoolbus Fleet

Serving school transportation professionals in the U.S. and Canada

Please sign in or register to .    Close