Authorities concluded their investigation into the car crash that killed Rep. Jackie Walorsky (R-Ind.) last month, determining that the car their staff member was driving was responsible for the accident.
The Elkhart County Sheriff’s Office said in a release Friday that the cause of the accident was a Toyota RAV4 that employee Zachary Potts was driving north when he tried to cross a flat-bed truck in a southbound lane. entered. When POTUS attempted to cross the truck, the Toyota collided with a southbound Buick.
The office also concluded that excessive speed played a role in the accident. Reconstruction evidence from the crash showed that Toyota was traveling at 82 mph approximately five seconds before the collision occurred. The vehicle was “coasting” and dropped to 77 mph milliseconds before the airbag was deployed.
The accident occurred at around 12:30 p.m. on August 3, killing Walorsky, Potts, and Emma Thomson, Walorsky’s director of communications. Buick driver Edith Schmucker was also killed.
The Elkhart County coroner ruled that Walorsky’s death was accidental and was caused by a dislocation of the cervical spine as a result of the accident. Potts, Thomson and Schmucker died from multiple injuries in the accident, the coroner ruled.
Police changed initial details of what happened a day after the accident, declaring that the car was a passenger crossing the centerline of Walorsky State Highway and caused the head-on accident. Officials originally said that Schmacher’s car had come in Toyota’s way.
The sheriff’s office release said airbag control module data showed Potts had driven Toyota to the left just before the accident.
Investigators found no evidence of cell phone use prior to the accident after reviewing cell phone information from all occupants of both vehicles. They also found no evidence of mechanical failures.
“All the evidence and information gathered is consistent with any person attempting to cross another vehicle on a two-lane road,” the release said.
The Sheriff’s Office consulted with the Indiana State Police for an independent review of the evidence, and the Police Department reached the same conclusion.
Walorsky won Indiana’s 2 . had representedRa Congressional District since 2013 and was running for re-election this year. A general election to determine who will be in the seat for the next two years as well as a special election will be held in November to fill his seat for the remainder of the term.