A 47-year-old truck driver has been charged with culpable driving over the Melbourne freeway crash that killed four police officers.
The Cranbourne man was charged with four counts of culpable driving over last Wednesday’s fatal collision, police said in a statement early on Monday.
He had been in hospital until Sunday night. The driver was charged after a joint investigation by the major collision investigation unit and the homicide squad.
Senior Constable Lynette Taylor, Senior Constable Kevin King, Constable Glen Humphris and Constable Josh Prestney died when a truck crashed into them while they were dealing with a Porsche driver in an emergency lane on Melbourne’s Eastern Freeway at Kew.
Porsche driver Richard Pusey, 41, has been charged with nine offences, including driving at a dangerous speed, reckless conduct endangering life, failing to render assistance and drug possession.
Victoria’s Police Commissioner on the TODAY show. Post continues below.
It is alleged that the truck was travelling at 100kph at the time of the collision.
He remains in custody on remand.
The truck driver is due to appear in the Melbourne Magistrates Court on Monday.
Everything we know about the Eastern Freeway Crash
The sun was only just setting on Wednesday, April 22, when two police officers intercepted a Porsche on the Chandler Highway at Kew, on Melbourne’s Eastern Freeway, at 5:40pm.
The car had been speeding, and the two police stopped in the emergency lane of the freeway, calling for backup after deciding to impound the luxury car.
Shortly after two more officers arrived, the group was ploughed into from behind by a refrigerated semi-trailer.
All four died at the scene.
On Thursday afternoon, we learned their names: Leading Senior Constable Lynette Taylor, Constable Glen Humphris, Senior Constable Kevin King and Constable Josh Prestney.
In a statement to the Herald Sun, Victorian Chief Commissioner Graham Ashton said the officers were undertaking everyday duties to keep the community safe when they were killed.
“They were members of our Road Policing Drug and Alcohol Section and Highway Patrol. They were our colleagues, our friends, our squad mates, our family.
“Each from different backgrounds, each with different life experiences, each with a common goal to keep the community safe.
“Their families will never be the same and our thoughts and prayers are with them.”
The grandmother of Constable Josh Prestney told The Herald Sun the 28-year-old had only just begun working as a police officer: “He was just on a stint before being at Kew station. He had only started on this on Tuesday.”