Trucker Plans Guilty Plea In Indiana Crash That Killed 4

RICHMOND, Ind. (AP) — A truck driver whose semitrailer crashed into a car along an eastern Indiana highway construction zone last year, killing four young siblings, has filed notice that he intends to plead guilty in the case.

Corey Robert Withrow, 32, of Camden, Ohio, was scheduled for trial Nov. 1 in a Wayne County court, but a Feb. 24 mercy plea hearing is now scheduled instead, court records show.

If Withrow pleads guilty as a mercy plea, his sentence will be argued before a judge, who will make the sentencing decision, the Palladium-Item reported Monday.

Withrow is charged with four counts of causing death, one count of causing catastrophic injury when operating a vehicle while intoxicated, and four counts of reckless homicide.

The fiery July 2020 crash along Interstate 70 killed Anesa Noel Acosta, 15; Quintin Michael McGowan, 13; Brekkin Riley Bruce, 8; and Trentin Beau Bruce, 6. Their father, Aaron Bruce of Kansas City, Missouri, who was driving the car, suffered severe injuries.

A message seeking comment from Withrow’s attorneys was left Monday by The Associated Press.

Witness said Withrow was driving his semitrailer erratically as he neared slowed traffic merging into a single lane due to construction work. His truck was traveling 72 mph (116 kilometers per hour) when it struck the family's rented car, sending it into a second truck, then into the median, causing the car to catch fire.

After the crash, Withrow showed symptoms of impairment and toxicology tests revealed the presence of cannabis, amphetamines and ecstasy in Withrow’s system, court records show.

Withrow is currently incarcerated at a state prison in Ohio, where he was sentenced in September 2020 out of Preble County to three years for violating community control requirements from a burglary conviction.