77-Year-Old Bus Driver Charged With Vehicular Homicide in Deaths of Student, Teacher in New Jersey Crash

The 77-year-old school bus driver who crashed last week while trying to make a U-turn on Interstate 80 was charged Thursday with recklessly causing the deaths of a child and a teacher, according to criminal complaints.

Hudy Muldrow Sr. of Woodland Park, N.J., was charged with two counts of death-by-auto, also known as vehicular homicide, accused of reckless driving that caused the deaths of fifth-grader Miranda Vargas, 10, and social-studies teacher Jennifer Williamson Kennedy, 51, both of Paramus, N.J.

State police were transporting Muldrow to the Morris County jail here, where he will spend the night before a Superior Court judge determines Friday whether he should be released under special conditions or remain in custody while the charges are pending.

A dump truck struck the bus after Muldrow attempted to access the official-use-only cutaway between the east- and westbound lanes of I-80, according to an affidavit from Trooper Daniel Wojcik.

The bus, one of three school buses bound for a field trip at Waterloo Village in Byram, N.J., had 43 passengers on board from East Brook Middle School in Paramus, about a 45-mile drive to the east. Muldrow and the dump truck driver, who was not identified, were injured, along with multiple passengers aboard Muldrow’s bus, according to the affidavit.

“The full extent of the nonfatal injuries has yet to be determined but range from minor to multiple serious and potentially life-threatening injuries,” according to Wojcik’s affadavit.

Referring to Muldrow’s bus as Bus 2, the affidavit gives the following account:

Three buses left East Brook Middle School around 9:20 a.m. to head to Waterloo Village. Shortly after 10 a.m. May 17, the three buses left I-80 heading west at Exit 25 onto northbound U.S. 206.

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SOURCE: USA Today, Peggy Wright