PETERSBURG, Ind. (AP) - Prosecutors filed 12 charges Tuesday against a man accused of being high on methamphetamine when he drove the wrong way on Interstate 69 and caused a crash that killed three people, including a pregnant woman.
Brian L. Paquette, 48, of Newport News, Virginia, faces three counts each of reckless homicide, operating a vehicle while intoxicated causing death and resisting law enforcement causing death. He also faces one count each of involuntary manslaughter causing the death of a fetus, methamphetamine possession and operating a vehicle while intoxicated causing serious bodily injury.
Friday’s crash killed Autumn Kapperman, 21, of Boonville, who was 5 months pregnant; Stephanie Molinet, 22 of Elberfeld; and Jason Lowe, 44, of Fishers, state police said.
Court documents filed by the Pike County Prosecutor’s Office say Paquette told an officer he had smoked meth at a party and thought he was being chased by farmers in a field at the time of the crash near Petersburg, about 40 miles north of Evansville.
Shortly before the crash, a passing motorist informed a trooper parked along the interstate about a wrong-way driver headed north in the southbound lanes, police said. The trooper located Paquette’s SUV and tried to get his attention but Paquette crossed the median and made a U-turn to head south in the northbound lanes, police said.
The SUV struck Molinet’s car head-on, then went into the path of an SUV driven by Lowe, police said. Kapperman was riding in Molinet’s car.
Samantha Lowe, 46, of Fishers, was injured in the crash, police said. Her relationship to Jason Lowe wasn’t clear.
Paquette is being treated at an Evansville hospital. It wasn’t clear whether he has an attorney who might comment on his behalf.
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