Police: Passenger Tries To Take Control Of Bus, Causes Crash

Aug 23, 2019

Credit Indiana State Police

Indiana State Police have released information about a passenger on board a bus in Porter County trying to commandeer it while it was being operated on I-94 in Porter County. Read more from the release below.

On Thursday August 22nd, 2019 at approximately 6:30 PM, the Indiana State Police responded to a crash involving a private charter bus and a commercial motor vehicle on Interstate 94 westbound near the 28 mile marker, which is just east of Chesterton, Indiana.  Preliminary investigation by Trooper Brayan Elias-Espinoza indicates that at approximately 6:30 PM CST an Indian Trails charter bus collided with a semi tractor trailer that was also traveling westbound.  The bus was being driven by Jill Mcvannel, 52, of Saginaw, Michigan and the semi tractor was being driven by Daniel Martinez, 38, of Romeoville, Illinois.  Following the impact, both vehicle ran off the roadway and came to a stop on the outside shoulder.

Initial reports indicate that a passenger on the charter bus named Pedro Garcia Rodriquez, 36, of Chicago, Illinois made his way to the front of the bus where he grabbed the wheel in an apparent attempt to gain control of the bus.  This action resulted in the bus swerving out of its lane and striking the striking the semi truck, running them both off the roadway.   Mr. Rodriquez and three other individuals complained of pain following the crash, with only Mr. Rodriquez being transported to Porter Regional Hospital with non life threatening injuries. The bus had been traveling from Benton Harbor, Michigan to Chicago, Illinois and had 51 passengers aboard at the time of the crash. 

Pedro Rodriquez is being held on charges of:

Aggravated Battery  -  Level 3 Felony

Criminal Recklessness with a Motor Vehicle  -  Level 6 Felony

Criminal Mischief -  B Misdemeanor