Driver involved in hit-and-run Lancaster Mennonite school bus crash facing multiple charges

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EAST LAMPETER TOWNSHIP, LANCASTER COUNTY, Pa. — A driver faces multiple charges in connection to a school bus crash in Lancaster County one week ago.

Fourteen students and two adults were injured when that bus rolled over in East Lampeter Township.

For a week police were looking for the driver of a white Chevy Malibu that they said caused the crash.

Police identified James Irvin III, 46, as the driver, who police said was trying to pass an oversized load on Lincoln Highway, which ultimately ended in disaster.

James Irvin

East Lampeter Township Police Captain Stephen Zerbe said, “Unable to slow down quick enough, it rear-ended the lead escort vehicle. The escort vehicle then swerved to its left and struck the school bus as it was passing in the opposite direction.”

That school bus rolled over, and 14 students from Lancaster Mennonite School were injured, along with two adults.

Lancaster County District Attorney Craig Stedman said Irvin, originally of Norristown, was living with his parents in Lancaster Township.

Irvin’s lawyer called police and told them he was the driver of the white Chevy Malibu officials said caused the crash.

Stedman said Irvin did not even have a driver’s license.

“The last time we could tell from his record that he had his license was 2004,” Stedman said.

He said police were close to identifying Irvin as a suspect through a list of vehicle registrations.

“We were going to get him. He turned himself in, but we were going to get him,” the district attorney said.

Police impounded the white Chevy Malibu, which they said had damage to the front.

Irvin is facing multiple charges, including four felonies.

Stedman said, “He knew exactly what he did from the moment he did it. And from that moment he made a choice to defy the law, to carelessly drive away from kids he could have well killed. He knew it was a school bus. And I would say he was absolutely actively hiding and came forward at a time when we were closing in on him.”

Irvin is currently out on bail.

A 6-year-old boy is still in the hospital following that crash, and the district attorney said he is recovering but his injuries are serious.