LMPD: Passenger intentionally runs van off road with children inside
Stephen A. Wright (Source: LMDC)
LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - A Louisville man was arrested Sunday after intentionally causing the van in which he and two small children were passengers to crash, according to police, who also charged him with assault on an outstanding warrant for child abuse.
According to arrest reports, Stephen A. Wright Sr. argued with the mother of the children and threatened to kill her as she drove the van on Sunday.
Police said while stopped at a traffic light, Wright grabbed the steering wheel and told the woman he was going to run the car off the road. When the light turned green and the van continued down the street, Wright grabbed the steering wheel again and jerk it to the left, causing the vehicle to cross oncoming traffic, the arrest report states. The van ran into a yard and struck a utility pole and concrete staircase. Wright hit his head on the windshield, causing it to crack.
Investigators said the driver got the children out of the van and checked them for injuries, but they were not hurt. Bystanders called police as Wright worked to get out of the van. The driver detained him for several minutes, police said, but eventually, Wright managed to work his way out of his shirt and ran shirtless from the scene on foot.
Police said Wright and the driver share children, but it was not clear whether the children riding in the van are his.
Wright was charged with 1st degree wanton endangerment and 1st degree criminal mischief in this case.
Officers also charged Wright with 4th degree assault in a June 10 case in which police say he pushed a 13-year-old boy through a glass window, causing a chipped tooth and a severe cut to the teen's hand.
Investigators said Wright and the boy's mother had been fighting when the woman asked the teen to take his siblings next door. While the boy was leaving, police say, Wright followed him and shoved him through the window, then punched him in the face. The child was rushed to Kosair Children's Hospital for treatment of his injuries.