Court: No new trial for hit-run driver who caused school bus crash


A state court says a Lancaster man will not get a new trial for causing and then fleeing a hit-and-run crash that caused a school bus to overturn.

James P. Irvin III, 48, is serving 5-20 years in state prison after his conviction last year on 68 counts, including nine felony counts of aggravated assault and aggravated assault by vehicle.

Irvin argued there wasn’t enough evidence to convict him of aggravated assault, but Superior Court disagreed Monday and denied Irvin’s request for a new trial.

The Lancaster County District Attorney’s office said Irvin was going about 70 mph when he tried to pass two 86-foot tractor-trailers and their escort vehicles. As he returned to his lane, Irvin struck the lead escort vehicle from behind and caused it to sideswipe the oncoming bus, which then struck a truck and overturned.

A 6-year-old student was ejected and pinned underneath the bus. He was hospitalized for weeks after sustaining a fractured clavicle, a lacerated spleen, rib fractures, and other injuries. A 16-year-old student sustained broken vertebrae and was hospitalized for days.

Twelve other students and their driver were treated for minor injuries.

The 10-page opinion from Superior Court says “Irvin knew of the risk of collision and potentially serious injury when he broke the speed limit by 30 mph and passed in an opposing traffic lane.” The court said Irvin “put his punctuality ahead of the safety of everyone else on the road that day.”

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