Bus driver asks for forgiveness
CARLISLE COUNTY, KY- One year after a bus crash that killed a first grader and injured 19 other elementary school students, the driver is asking for forgiveness.
In day 3 of her trial, Anita Roach, took to the stand in her own defense. Roach faces second-degree manslaughter in connection to the death of Logan Simpson, 6. It is alleged she was under the influence of prescription drugs at the time of the crash.
When Roach took the stand- she was questioned extensively about a previous accident involving a bus on a field trip to Noble Park. Her lawyer, Will Kautz said it was a blind spot, not an alleged prescription pill problem that was responsible for the wreck.
But it was the May 16, 2011 crash that he focused on. It was a deer, Roach testified she was trying to avoid when the bus went off the road.
Breaking into sobs, she told the jury she never should have tried to correct her mistake, "I'm sorry, it was my fault. I shouldn't have done it."
She also remembered hearing her granddaughter, who was on the bus call out for help and later, seeing the lifeless body of the little girl's classmate, Logan Simpson.
"I started walking and I looked down and I didn't know who it was. I didn't know what his name was. All I could think was, 'God, why couldn't you take me and let him live?' It's not fair, it's just a little boy."
"I would not have hurt anybody on that bus. I would have died that day for your son to live, Mr. and Mrs. Simpson. I would have taken my own life for him to live, it was my fault, I'm sorry," she continued.
The defense also called Dr.Jonathan Lipman- a neuropharmacologist. Lipman, who is trained to deal with effects of drugs on the brain, told the jury Roach was taking medications she needed and in proper amounts. He also noted Roach had been on some of those medications for 5 years and knew how they affected her.
The defense also called the other drivers that had been on the field trip with Roach. Those ladies had had lunch with her and even observed her driving. They both testified, nothing seemed out of the ordinary. Later, bus monitors went as far as calling her a 'perfectly good' driver.
Closing arguments in the case will be heard beginning at 9 Thursday morning before the case is given to the jury.