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Operator of limo company involved in crash that killed 20 in custody

11 October 2018
Operator of limo company involved in crash that killed 20 in custody

The operator of a NY limousine company, whose vehicle was involved in an accident that killed 20 people last week, was taken into police custody Wednesday.

Police say they have charged a limo service operator with criminally negligent homicide after a crash that killed 20 people in upstate NY.

The New York State Police say that the operator of a limousine company involved in a deadly crash has been arrested.

They were headed to an upstate New York brewery, officials said, when the vehicle ran a stop sign at a highway intersection in Schoharie, New York, about 40 miles (65 km) west of Albany, police and the NTSB said.

Seventeen young adults, two pedestrians and the limo driver died in the incident, described by authorities as the deadliest U.S. transport crash in nearly a decade.

McGowan's aunt Valerie Abeling told CNN her niece had texted her friend saying that the company had sent the stretch limousine to replace a vehicle that had broken down.

A sticker was placed on the vehicle declaring it "unserviceable", state Department of Transportation spokesman Joseph Morrissey said.

"State police are working with federal and local authorities to investigate the crash, and I have directed state agencies to provide every resource necessary to aid in this investigation and determine what led to this tragedy", Cuomo said in a statement. A funeral Mass will be held at the church on Saturday morning.

The limousine that ran the stop sign was cited for code violations on September 4, including a problem with the antilock brake system malfunction indicator system.

It was the latest in a series of inspection knocks for the Gansevoort, N.Y. -based company.

Prestige's lawyer, Lee Kindlon, has said that safety issues were corrected. He said Kindlon's assertion that the code violations had been corrected and the vehicle cleared for service was "categorically false". He said the driver might have misjudged his ability to stop at the bottom of a hill.

Kim Lisinicchia told CBS in an interview broadcast on Wednesday that there were several times she heard her husband, Scott, state: "I'm not going to drive this, like this. For over 20-plus years he drove a tractor-trailer", Kim Lisinicchia said.

The Times Union of Albany first reported about the traffic stop.

Kim Lisinicchia told CBS in an interview broadcast Wednesday that her husband repeatedly said he wouldn't drive the vehicle the way it was. But then "he trusted in what the limo company said, that the cars were all right".

Sumwalt said most of the victims were found inside the vehicle following the crash and one or two victims may have been ejected.

"He was in excellent health". "I am in no way trying to make it seem like it's about me or my husband. I have to stand for him, because nobody else will".

Community members held a candlelit vigil Monday night to honor the victims of the crash. The 24-year-old from nearby Johnstown was the youngest victim of Saturday afternoon's crash in Schoharie (skoh-HAYR'-ee).

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Monday that a limousine that crashed and killed 20 on Saturday should not have been on the road. Her family is holding a private service Friday. She and her three sisters - Mary Dyson, Allison King and Abby Jackson - and her husband, Axel Steenburg, and his brother, Rich Steenburg, all died, relatives told the New York Times. Cuomo said the driver did not have proper licensing and that the vehicle had failed inspection last month.