The man who crashed a school bus last week,JohnthonyWalker, 24, appeared in court this morning andwaived his right to a hearing, which he’s entitled to within 10 days of his arrest.
Walker is currently charged with five counts of vehicular homicide,reckless endangerment and reckless driving after he crashed a school bus carrying 37 students.
He’s hired attorney Amanda Dunn from local firmLuther-Anderson PLLP to represent him.
Judge Lila Statom set a new court date for Dec. 15, and told Dunn and District Attorney Neal Pinkston that she is going to clear her docket that day to focus on Walker’s hearing.
Wearing a red jumpsuit and cuffs, Walker answered the judge’s questions quietly and signed waivers to move his hearing.
As of Monday, five children remain hospitalized after the crash. Three are in critical condition and two are listed as fair.
Dunn briefly spoke to members of the media after the hearing.
“Obviously, this has been a devastating tragedy for the Chattanooga community,” she said. “There are families in mourning; there are families who are still dealing with loved ones in the hospital. Mr. Walker’s family is also devastated by this tragedy. Mr. Walker has been devastated. We are hopeful that the investigation can conclude quickly and we have a better understanding of what occurred last Monday.”
She said that prayers continue to go out to the entire community and that until proven guilty Walker is innocent.
“In the eyes of the law, he’s an innocent man,” she said.
She didn’t take additional questions.