Wednesday, June 1 2011 8:40 AM EDT2011-06-01 12:40:42 GMT
A North Carolina bus company is shut down this morning after the deadly bus crash yesterday in Caroline County.More >>
CAROLINE, VA (WWBT) - The bus driver involved in the deadly crash on Interstate 95 appeared in a Caroline County court Friday morning and faced new charges.
Kin Yiu Cheung, 37, has now been charged with four counts of involuntary manslaughter in the accident that killed four people from New York, New Jersey and Philadelphia and injured dozens of other passengers. He was originally charged with just reckless driving.
Cheung did not have much to say when he walked into the courtroom on Friday. We asked him to comment but he did not respond.
His lawyer did say that he was not surprised about the new charges, but that he did not know about them before he came to court today.
Prosecutors say they actually filed the papers in circuit court on Wednesday, but they were sealed until Friday morning. We're also told the reason for this is because investigators did not want the media to find out about the charges, report it, and possibly have Cheung flee the area.
NBC12 aked why it took from Wednesday morning until Friday morning to arrest Cheung on the new charges and was told that happened because prosecutors did not know where Cheung was, and they were hoping he'd show up to court today, which he did.
NBC12 obtained new documents filed in the circuit court today which revealed new information about the crash.
First, Cheung told investigators he was tired and that he dozed off and fell asleep. When he woke up, he told investigators he turned the bus hard to the left and then the bus flipped over.
Also included is information from passengers about what happened on the bus just prior to the accident. One passenger said she saw the driver talking on his cell phone to someone saying he was tired and that he did not have much turn around time between trips.
Another passenger said that she saw the bus driver drinking Red Bulls and cups of coffee.
Another passenger, who said he is a long-time bus driver, said he knew something was wrong as soon as he got on the bus. He said the driver made extra stops, would not let the passengers get off the bus to go to the bathroom despite the fact the bathroom wasn't working, and that the bus driver was very upset and quick to get angry at passengers.
According to the documents, the drivers' log book was found to be outdated by about two days. Police also collected the cell phone of the driver, along with some of Cheung's possessions on the bus.
The NTSB has been investigating as well. They are expected to release new details on it's findings later today.
Cheung was lead out of the courtroom and back into handcuffs after today's hearing. He is in jail, awaiting a bond hearing later this afternoon. Prosecutors say they will work to ensure he stays in jail.
Cheung is scheduled to be back in court on Wednesday at 10 a.m. in Caroline County.