THP crash report indicates driver had drugs in system during cra - WSMV News 4

THP crash report indicates driver had drugs in system during crash with school bus

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The crash happened on Culleoka Highway. (Source: Maury County Fire Department) The crash happened on Culleoka Highway. (Source: Maury County Fire Department)
CULLEOKA, TN (WSMV) -

Parents in Maury County say they are angry after learning a woman who ran her car into a school bus full of children may have had drugs in her system, according to a report by the Tennessee Highway Patrol.

Trudy Lindahl has three children who attend Culleoka Unit school: a 13-year-old daughter, and two sons, 14 and 16 years old. 

They were all on the school bus on April 6th when a car came crashing into their bus head-on traveling down Culleoka Highway near Glencoe Road.

Police say Nicole F. Villasenor had just picked her 5-year-old daughter from school and was traveling west on Culleoka Highway when witnesses say she suddenly veered into eastbound traffic, striking a school bus head-on. 

"My oldest son called me and said they got hit by a car on the bus and that I had to come and get them," Lindahl said. "It was one of the scariest days of my life," she told News 4 while fighting back tears. 

Lindahl says her daughter hit her head on the seats during the crash. One of her sons hurt his ribs. Sixteen children were injured in total. Wednesday afternoon, reading the THP crash report Lindahl could only shake her head seeing the other driver may have been impaired.

"That makes me angry, not only for my kids but all the kids on the bus, her own child," Lindahl said. "How can somebody put their own child in danger like that? I'm angry for everybody," she added.

THP's initial crash report says the other driver, Nicole Villasenor, didn't show signs of alcohol, but bloodwork came back positive for drugs, a controlled substance, that troopers haven't yet named.

Troopers say the woman had just picked up her young daughter from school when she veered into oncoming traffic hitting the bus. She and her daughter were flown to Vanderbilt. Villasenor told News 4 she did not want to comment when the station called Wednesday morning.

"To put your own child in a car and drive that way and then crash into a bus that's full of other children, it's not okay," Lindahl said. "You don't get behind the wheel if you're under a controlled substance whether it's prescribed to you or not," she added.

None of the children on the bus were seriously injured. Parents still thank the school bus driver for acting quickly to stop the bus before the crash on the narrow Culleoka Highway.

"I'm just very thankful to the bus driver," Lindahl said. "I can't say that enough. She kept my kids as safe as she could that day."

The THP's critical incident team is getting close to the end of its investigation. They are looking at possible criminal charges against Villasenor.

Stay with News4 for updates on this developing story.

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