Driver in Rochester bus crash that killed 3 denied early release

Photo: WNDU
Photo: WNDU(WKYT)
Published: Nov. 29, 2021 at 4:27 PM EST
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ROCHESTER, Ind. (Fort Wayne’s NBC) - The Fulton County Prosecutor’s Office says the woman who was found guilty in a deadly bus crash that killed three kids has been denied early release from prison.

Fulton County Prosecutor Mike Marrs said Alyssa Shepherd, who was sentenced to four years in prison in 2020, was able to complete a bible study course through the Department of Corrections that allowed her to shave six months off of her original sentence, moving it up from September of 2022 to March of 2022.

Mars said the program could shave an additional 60-90 days off of that sentence, allowing her the chance to be home for Christmas with her kids. After pushback from the victims’ family, a motion against her early release was filed.

Fort Wayne’s NBC affiliate WNDU reports that her early release has been denied. Now, Shepherd is expected to be released in March 2022 after she completes the rest of her sentence.

On Oct. 31, 2018, Shepherd was driving her Toyota pickup truck down a state highway outside Rochester when she hit and killed 6-year-old twin boys Xzavier and Mason Ingle and their 9-year-old sister Alivia Stahl. 12-year-old Maverik Lowe, who was hit as well but survived, and has had a grueling recovery.

Shepherd testified at her trial that she didn’t realize the flashing lights she encountered were from a bus. But that didn’t sway the jury that found her guilty of all charges.

The wreck triggered new legislation in Indiana, toughening penalties for drivers who ignore bus stop arms. Communities across Indiana — including several in the Fort Wayne’s NBC News viewing area — implemented additional crackdowns on traffic violations related to school bus stops.

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