By Frances Kuo
(NEW ALBANY, Ind., July 7th, 2004, 5:30 p.m.) -- Charges have been filed in connection with a head-on collision June 25th on Highway 150 in Clark County took the life of a young southern Indiana couple and their two-year-old daughter. At a news conference Wednesday the Floyd County prosecutor revealed what investigators believe caused the crash. WAVE 3's Frances Kuo reports.
Floyd County Prosecutor Keith Henderson says 23-year-old Benny Wages will face three charges of reckless homicide in the June 25th crash that killed 27-year-old Bobby Littrell, his wife, Kimberly, and their 2-year-old daughter, Shelby.
After two weeks of interviewing witnesses and reconstructing the accident, Henderson says investigators concluded that there's no indication drugs or alcohol were involved in the crash. "This is a case of there were no alcohol or drugs involved."
Henderson says "it's difficult to separate sometimes an accident when there's no drugs or alcohol involved versus a criminal act."
Sgt. Doug Standiford with the Floyd County Sheriff's Department says this is the first time he has seen charges filed when alcohol or drugs weren't connected with a fatal crash. "This is the first one that I can recall in quite awhile that didn't involve drugs or alcohol."
Police say Wages was westbound on U.S. 150 when he tried to pass a line of cars in his pickup and struck the Grand Am the Littrells were driving in head-on.
Attorney Michael McDaniel represents Wages. "He is on the edge of breaking down. And he's tearful -- think how you'd be. It's hard."
The stretch of highway where the Littrells were killed is already dotted with memorial crosses, and authorities hope this latest accident will send a clear message to other drivers.
Henderson says he has met with 15 members of the Littrell family, who are all devastated by the loss. "The family and I were on the same page," Henderson says. "I think they believe there needs to be accountability for these actions."
Wages faces between two to eight years for each count of reckless homicide. He is due back in court on August 17th for a pretrial hearing in Floyd Circuit Court.
Online Reporter: Frances Kuo