Eight Killed After Bus Crash, Driver Reportedly Had a Dark History

(RepublicanDaily.org) – An investigation into the deaths of eight passengers of a bus ferrying workers to a watermelon farm in Marion County, Florida, has revealed a slew of past violations and convictions associated with the suspect who was driving the vehicle that caused the bus to crash.

The bus, which was carrying 40 farm workers who were scheduled to work at the watermelon farm, careened off the road and hit a tree before finally flipping over after being hit by a 2001 Ford Ranger truck driven by Bryan Maclean Howard. Eight of the farm workers died in the accident, which also left more than a dozen injured.

Police who first responded to the scene of the gruesome crash found Howard with bloodshot and watery eyes. A record of the 41-year-old suspect’s arrest also said that Howard exhibited slurred speech and repeatedly failed sobriety tests administered by officers. The suspect also told police that he did not remember the incident at all, and said that he was on his way to a clinic to receive medication for his chipped vertebra. After his arrest, authorities charged Howard with eight counts of DUI (driving under the influence) manslaughter.

According to police, Howard told them that he had smoked marijuana oil around five to six hours before the incident. He said that he had also taken blood pressure medication and anti-seizure meds.

Apparently, the incident is not the first traffic accident that Howard has been involved in; just three days before the accident, the suspect was involved in another crash. He was also charged in 2019 for a hit-and-run, and was sentenced to probation in 2013 after being convicted of grand theft. A year later, however, the probation was revoked after drug tests revealed that he had cocaine in his system. In 2009, Howard had another brush with the law after police found him in possession of marijuana and other narcotics.

Copyright 2024, RepublicanDaily.org