A truck driver has been sentenced to 22 years in prison for fatally striking four officers conducting a traffic stop on an Australian highway.
A truck driver in Australia has been sentenced to 22 years in prison for plowing his vehicle into four officers conducting a traffic stop on the side of Melbourne's Eastern Freeway, fatally injuring all four.
Mohinder Singh was high on drugs and sleep deprived on April 20, 2020, when his prime mover began to drift into the road's emergency lane. Just moments ago, three officers and a female officer pulled over Richard Pusey, 42, a mortgage broker, for speeding in his black Porsche at about 90 mph.
The truck collided with the group of officers as they debated impounding Pusey's car. Singh, police allege, had taken methamphetamine and other narcotics in the days preceding the incident.
Additionally, witnesses on the scene observed that the driver seemed tired.
Rather than assisting the officers in the aftermath of the accident, Pusey filmed senior constables Lynette Taylor and Kevin King, as well as constables Glen Humphris and Josh Prestney, as they lay dying on the ground.
The Porsche driver, who was urinating on the side of the lane, escaped injury in the crash, which marked Victoria's single-largest loss of police lives.
Justice Paul Coghlan described Pusey's recordings as "chilling" during Tuesday's sentencing hearing for Singh, adding that the crash "shocked the public conscience."
“The grief experienced by those who are nearest to the victims is intense and life-altering,” Coghlan testified in court. “Such sadness is exacerbated by the untimely and inexplicable existence of the deaths.”
Singh was sentenced to 22 years in jail, retroactive to the day of the crash, when he was apprehended. He must complete a minimum of 18 12 years before applying for parole.
“While justice has been served in relation to the actual crash, no amount of punishment will compensate us for the loss of our loved ones and the void at our tables that we will feel for the rest of our lives,” said Andrew Prestney, father of one of the four officers, Joshua Prestney.
“We take comfort in the fact that our four will not be forgotten as long as we keep them close to our hearts,” he said.
Pusey pleaded guilty earlier this month to multiple charges stemming from the crash, including defying public decency, drug possession, reckless conduct endangering serious injury, and speeding. He has apologised for his conduct several times and is scheduled to be sentenced on April 28.