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Bus Company Owner Receives Probation for Fatal Bus Crash

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Jarod Cassidy3 years ago

According to Fox News, the owner of a Houston-based bus company has been sentenced to three years probation for a 2008 crash that left 17 bus passengers dead.

About the Tragic Bus Accident

On August 8, 2008, an Angel Tours tour bus carrying 55 members of Houston’s Vietnamese Catholic community veered off a highway bridge and crashed while on its wave to an annual conclave in Carthage, Missouri.

The accident, which occurred about 60 miles north of Dallas, left 17 passengers dead and another 38 people injured. An investigation by the National Transportation Safety board concluded the crash occurred when a retreaded tire on the bus’s right front axle was punctured by an unknown object.

Investigators also noted that the tire was affixed to the front axle in an illegal manner and later discovered that the bus was not authorized to leave Texas due to failing an inspection only three months earlier.

Owner Indicted for Making False Statements

In 2013, the owner of Angel Tours, Angel de la Torre, was indicted on charges of making false statements.

Those charges were dropped in March when de la Torre agreed to plead guilty to a charge of operating of operating a commercial motor vehicle after an unsatisfactory rating – the charge carried a sentence of up to a year in prison where as his previous charge was punishable by up to five years in prison.

However, at his sentencing Friday, de la Torre only received three years of probations. Additionally, he was fined $500 to be paid in installments over the next 30 months and issued 55 hours of community service.

Victims and family members of those injured and killed in the crash expressed their dissatisfaction with the sentencing. According to the daughter of one of the victim, the medical and funeral costs for those killed and injured exceeded more than $3.7 million – leaving her to question whether “$25 for (30) months” is a “deterrent at all.”


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