Crime of the week: Driver charged with manslaughter after wreck
WICHITA FALLS, Texas (KAUZ) - The Wichita Falls Police Department said the driver of a pickup involved in a deadly crash on the Lloyd Ruby Overpass has been charged with manslaughter. The crash was reported on Sunday, July 24.
“Just a little before 6 p.m. that evening, our officers were called to a single-vehicle crash,” WFPD PIO Sgt. Charlie Eipper said. “They arrived and found two people in the bed of the pickup had been thrown from the pickup when they hit the guardrail.”
After speaking with witnesses, officers detained the driver of the vehicle, Bryan Hernandez. According to an affidavit, witnesses said they observed the “vehicle being operated recklessly” and that the truck had “ran a red light and continued northbound on the ramp entering the freeway” where the vehicle “struck the cement barrier causing one of the passengers – to be ejected.”
Sadly that passenger, 33-year-old Michael Lynn Little of Granbury, Texas, was pronounced dead on the scene.
“We always should be responsible and pay attention and drive according to the law, this is just one of those reasons why,” Eipper said.
In fact, Eipper has advice for anyone using the bed of their truck to give someone a ride.
“If they do have someone in the back of the pickup, try to stay off the highways,” Eipper said. “That will require you to drive at higher speeds, you know, take other routes that are a little bit safer, might take you a little bit longer but at least it’s safer and everybody gets the advantage of arriving to their destination without being hurt.”
Eipper wants people to take their time and plan-ahead when driving with passengers in the bed of their truck.
“It just takes a little bit of planning,” Eipper said. “The law allows it, but it’s just smart to try and plan a little better when you got somebody that’s in the back of a pickup and they’re not secure.”
Hernandez remains jailed for manslaughter on a $200,000 bond.
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