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Lawsuit Filed in Fatal North Central Texas College Bus Accident


According to KFOR, families of softball players killed in a tragic bus crash have filed a lawsuit against North Central Texas College and the company that made the charter bus involved in the accident.

About the Fatal Charter Bus Accident

In 2014 of September North Central Texas college women’s softball team traveled to Bethany, Oklahoma to play in a scrimmage against Southern Nazarene University.

Traveling on the way back to Texas around 9 p.m. the North Central Texas college women’s softball team’s bus was hit by a semi-trailer truck.

According to the National Transportation Safety Board the semi-trailer truck drove across the median into the southbound lanes of I-35.

According to officials the truck was traveling approximately 72 mph when colliding into the side of the bus, causing the bus to roll over.

A witness states that “There was a girl that was, she was in her seat, and the bus came on top of her, the bus fell on top of her head. And when I got into the bus, she had a pulse for about two or three minutes, and we were trying to use a jack to get the bus up, before we could get the bus jacked up enough to get her out, we lost the pulse.”

The Department of Public Safety reports that 19 year old Meagan Richardson, 18 year old Katelynn Woodlee, and 20 year old Jaiden Pelton died at the scene of the accident from serious injuries.

Brooke Deckard, 20 years old died at the hospital from vast injuries.

Semi-Trailer Charged, Commits Suicide

According to officials, the driver of the semi-trailer truck, 44-year-old Russel Staley, committed suicide two weeks ago.

According to investigators, Staley conveyed to them that he was distracted during the crash. Later on it was discovered that Staley had drugs and drug paraphernalia in the semi-trailer truck.

In June 2015 Staley was charged with four counts of manslaughter, after a nine month investigation.

Details of the Lawsuit

According to KXII, the families that lost children in the accident are filing a wrongful death lawsuit against Champion Bus Company.

Misty Woodlee, the mother of Katelynn Woodlee, reported to KXII that she realized the bus was cheaply made of plywood, Styrofoam, and metal pieces that weren’t welded together.

The families are also suing North Central Texas College for not enforcing the seat belt rule. The families have stated that any money won from the case will go towards a new softball stadium at North Central Texas College.

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