Truck driver who struck school bus, injured children gets 20.5 years in prison

An Indiana truck driver found guilty of slamming into a school bus loaded with students last May was sentenced in Columbia County court Monday afternoon.

BREAKING: Truck driver Wayne Murphy sentenced to 20.5 years for hitting a school bus full of middle schoolers that was parked on the side of the interstate. #news3now

— Amanda Quintana (@AmandaQTV) November 4, 2019

Judge Troy Cross sentenced 43-year-old Wayne Murphy to 20.5 years in prison, along with years of extended supervision and thousands of dollars in fines.

Murphy was found guilty of 30 of the 46 counts he was facing, including five felony counts for injury by intoxicated use of a vehicle and an additional five felony counts of second-degree reckless injury.

Dozens of students were injured, five seriously, when Murphy hit the school bus that was parked on the shoulder of the interstate because of mechanical issues. The Milwaukee-area middle school students were heading to the Wisconsin Dells for a field trip.

Authorities said they found prescription drugs in Murphy’s system at the time of the crash.

A Wisconsin State trooper testified that Murphy admitted to taking more medication than he was prescribed and another truck driver called to report Murphy’s erratic driving before the crash.

During the hearing, Murphy said the crash was “purely a mistake and accident” and he doesn’t believe medications or distraction had an affect.

He also questioned why the students were put on a faulty bus in the first place.

Wayne Murphy makes a statement: “I don’t wear my heart on my sleeve… but I am truly sorry.”

He says the crash was “purely a mistake and accident” and he doesn’t believe medications or distraction had an affect.

His attorney is requesting he be put on probation. #news3now

— Amanda Quintana (@AmandaQTV) November 4, 2019

Before he delivered the sentence, Cross said that Murphy had the “audacity” to try to blame the school instead of taking responsibility for the crash.

“Every little detail you had an excuse for,” Cross said.

Cross said Murphy even tried to blame the state for not offering him a better plea deal.

Murphy’s mother and brother claimed he doesn’t often show his emotions, and they know he’s truly sorry, but Cross said Murphy’s own statement “submarined” theirs.

A middle school student who had to be taken to the hospital via helicopter after the crash asked the judge to give Murphy the maximum sentence.

“My mom and teachers always say ‘Take responsibility for your actions’ and ‘Every action has a consequence.’ Well, Wayne Murphy is not trying to take responsibility for his careless actions of taking drugs, driving recklessly, and hurting me and my friends,” said Raphell Dorsey.

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