Nearly two months after a 17-year-old girl was violently struck by a motorist while waiting to board a school bus in Edina, the driver of the suspect vehicle has been arrested.
Edina police announced Thursday that 26-year-old Carlton D. Troutman, of Flint, Michigan, was recently arrested in Michigan in connection to the Jan. 23 hit-and-run. Troutman has been charged with 2nd-degree assault with a dangerous weapon, with a criminal complaint accusing Troutman of intentionally hitting the girl.
The incident happened around 8:10 a.m. near the intersection of France and Halifax avenues in Edina, and details of the crash obtained through witness statements and surveillance video reveals how lucky the teenage victim is lucky to be alive, much less having walked away from the violent collision without any major injuries.
Witnesses described the collision, saying the driver of a black sedan "drove excessively fast" behind the bus, around the right side of the bus and onto the shoulder before hitting the girl "in excess of the speed limit."
Passengers in the vehicle with Troutman told investigators that they believed Troutman hit the girl intentionally in a "cold-blooded" decision, also telling police that immediately after the collision Troutman said "anyone can get it: kids, mothers, babies."
One of the passengers said Troutman was going 60 mph when they saw the school bus, at which point Troutman sped up. The impact pushed the girl onto the hood of the car before she was thrown approximately 50 feet – all the way over the intersection of France and Halifax avenues.
Making the search for the Chevrolet Malibu the suspect was driving more difficult was the fact that the vehicle's owner falsely reported that his car had been stolen. In truth, the car owner, identified as "J.T." in the criminal complaint, admitted that he was with Troutman and the other passengers the night before the incident. He told police that he filed the false report to try and cover up the crime.
Troutman claimed loss of memory when police asked him about the hit-and-run.