A truck driver who was texting when he slammed into a car stopped at a red light Tuesday on a highway in Lake Elmo, instantly killing that driver, has made his first court appearance.
State Patrol Lt. Col. Matt Langer said 28-year-old Samuel Hicks of Independence, Wisconsin is charged with criminal vehicular homicide, and added that Hicks made no effort to stop and was going 63 miles per hour when he hit 54-year-old Robert Bursik.
“Enough is enough,” Langer said, “We see it too often. We see it too regularly and Tuesday was another example where someone is killed on our roads for no reason other than someone else’s choice to make that phone more important than driving.”
Hicks admitted that he was using his phone while texting with his girlfriend and using an app to look up information about a house.
Langer says distracted driving has become an epidemic across the state and, “We’re tired of it. We’re frustrated by it and yet it continues to happen. And Tuesday afternoon we saw another example of why this issue is so important to every Minnesotan.”
One in four crashes in Minnesota is attributed to distracted driving, killing 65 people a year on average.