Driver hits school bus, charged with third-offense DWI - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Driver hits school bus, charged with third-offense DWI

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(Source: Louisiana State Police) (Source: Louisiana State Police)
Dustin Richard McGowen. (Source: Louisiana State Police) Dustin Richard McGowen. (Source: Louisiana State Police)

A Eunice man is being charged with third-offense DWI following a crash between a pickup truck and a school bus on La 383 near Kinder on Tuesday.

Louisiana State Police, Troop D, responded to the incident, which left two children and the bus driver with minor injuries. All three were transported to a local hospital.

Authorities say that according to a preliminary investigation, a 2014 Toyota pickup truck, driven by Dustin Richard McGowen, was traveling west on La 383 when he struck the school bus from behind. Authorities say the bus was "lawfully stopped in the lane of travel, with red warning lights illuminated and stop signs deployed to drop off children."

Troopers who responded to the incident suspected that McGowen was intoxicated, but he refused to submit a toxicology sample.

"Troopers at the scene ... brought in a State Police Drug Recognition Expert, who determined that McGowen was impaired. McGowen would not agree to submit a toxicology sample," said Sgt. James Anderson, a Public Information Officer with the State Police, in a news release.

"A no refusal warrant was then obtained from a state district judge. Once issued, a no refusal warrant allows a law enforcement officer to bring an uncooperative driver to a qualified medical professional in order to obtain a toxicology sample without the driver's consent," Anderson said.

A toxicology sample was obtained from McGowen and will be submitted for analysis.

McGowen is charged with DWI third offense, three counts of negligent injury, illegal possession of Xanax, illegal possession of drug paraphernalia, careless operation, and failure to wear a seatbelt.

McGowen was booked into the Allen Parish Jail.

The crash remains under investigation. 

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