24-year-old Alyssa Shepherd was charged with three counts of reckless homicide after hitting four children with her truck in Rochester Indiana
The three deceased children were 6-year-old twins and their 9-year-old sister
A fourth child was seriously injured during the accident and taken to a local hospital
Shepherd was arrested Tuesday afternoon and reportedly paid the $15,000 bond on Tuesday evening
A Go Fund Me for the family has raised over $25,000 of the $100,000 goal
On Tuesday morning, in the blink of an eye three families were changed forever after 24-year-old Alyssa Shepherd struck four children at a bus stop in Rochester, Indiana.
Three of the children were pronounced dead on the scene and later discovered to be siblings. Twin brothers Xzavier and Mason Ingle, 6, and their older sister, 9-year-old Alivia Stahl have been confirmed as the children killed in the fatal accident.
The fourth child was not related to the other children. He was identified as 11-year-old Maverik Lowe. Lowe was taken to Parkview Medical Center in Fort Wayne with multiple broken bones and other serious injuries. According to Indiana State Police Sgt. Tony Slocum, Lowe was said to have been conscious, which he said was obviously a good thing.
He has multiple broken bones. My last report was that he was conscious so that’s a good thing.
According to Slocum, the children were crossing the street to get on a Tippecanoe Valley School Corporation school bus. The school bus had came to a stop and placed the stop-arm up and had emergency lights flashing. When the children were crossing they were struck by Shepherd in a 2017 Toyota Tacoma.
The investigation has shown that a school bus was traveling northbound and stopped, put its stop-arm up and had all the emergency lighting that is on the bus activated. The children then started to cross into the roadway and they were struck by the southbound vehicle.
There were other children at the bus stop, but they were not injured during the wreck. According to the ISP, the twins, and their sister attended Mentone Elementary School. Lowe attended Tippecanoe Valley Middle School. Tippecanoe Valley School Corporation released the following statement on their Facebook on Tuesday.
Our school corporation has suffered a tragedy this morning. We have learned of three student fatalities and one student seriously injured and airlifted to a Fort Wayne hospital as they were hit by a vehicle while boarding their bus.
We have deployed all school counselors to meet the emotional needs of our staff, students and parents.
We are awaiting to learn more confirmed details but wish to ask the community to come together to pray for the families, our students and our staff.
The wreck happened at 7:15 am, but according to a statement from ISP, Shepherd was arrested at her place of employment at 4:08 pm. Officers served Shepherd with a Fulton Superior Court arrest warrant for three counts of reckless homicide and a misdemeanor count for passing a school bus, with the stop arm extended, causing injury. Each reckless homicide charge is a Level 5 Felony. Passing the school bus is a Class A misdemeanor. The full statement from ISP can be read below.
Rochester Woman Arrested After Three Children Die in Crash
Rural Rochester – Today, at approximately 4:09 p.m. an investigation by officers from the Indiana State Police resulted in the arrest of Alyssa L. Shepherd, 24, rural Rochester, IN. She was arrested at her place of employment, in Rochester, IN, when officers served her with a Fulton Superior Court arrest warrant. The warrant alleged three felony charges for reckless homicide and a misdemeanor count for passing a school bus, with the stop arm extended, causing injury.
This morning at approximately 7:15 a.m., officers from the Indiana State Police and the Fulton County Sheriff’s Department responded to a single vehicle crash which resulted in the deaths of three elementary age children, and critical injuries to an 11 year-old boy.
The preliminary crash investigation revealed that Robert Reid, 46, Claypool, IN, was driving a 2015 Thomas school bus, northbound on State Road 25. Reid stopped the school bus in front of a mobile home park at 4684 North State Road 25. He activated the buses’ stop arm and exterior lighting, as he was picking up children from the westside of the road. As children crossed the road, to get on the bus, four children were allegedly hit by a southbound 2017 Toyota Tacoma, driven by Alyssa Shepherd, 24, rural Rochester, IN.
Three children, Xzavier Ingle, his twin brother, Mason Ingle, both six, and their sister, Alivia Stahl, nine, all died at the scene from injuries sustained in the crash. Maverik Lowe, 11, was flown, via Samaritan Helicopter, to Parkview Hospital in Ft. Wayne. At last check, he was in surgery with multiple broken bones and internal injuries.
The six year-old boys, and their sister, attended Mentone Elementary School. Lowe attended Tippecanoe Valley Middle School. The school bus was from the Tippecanoe Valley School Corporation.
This is an active investigation. No further information will be released at this time.
Assisting at the crash scene were the Fulton County Sheriff’s Department, the Rochester School Corporation, the Rochester and Mentone Fire Departments, Lutheran EMS, and the Fulton County Coroner’s Office.
All criminal defendants are to be presumed innocent until, and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.
Shepherd was held on a $15,000 surety bond, which was posted on Tuesday evening. It is reported that Shepherd has spent the majority of her career working with children. Shepherd was a children’s director at Faith Outreach Center in Rochester. According to her Facebook account that was deactivated on Tuesday afternoon, Shepherd was a school cheerleading coach. She had also worked at a gymnastics school and a summer camp.
A Go Fund Me was set up for the family by family friend Tonya Andrews-Sailors. The campaign has already raised over $25,000 of the $100,000 goal. Some have questioned the legitimacy of the account, but Andrews-Sailors the issues on her Facebook. Elgin Ingle also verified on Andrews-Sailors Facebook that the family is fully aware of the crowdfunding campaign have given their blessing.