ALGANSEE TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — The driver charged with hitting an Amish horse-drawn carriage, killing three children, told detectives he “had too many.”
Tyler Jackson Frye, 21, of Angola, Indiana is formally charged with three counts of operating under the influence causing death, two counts of operating under the influence causing serious injury and one count of felony firearm.
The crash happened around 6 p.m. Friday on Kelly Road south of Lester Road in Branch County’s Algansee Township, about 52 miles southeast of Battle Creek.
According to documents from the Branch County District Court, Frye told police he had consumed six beers throughout the day before the crash. He told investigators he was cresting a hill when he saw the southbound buggy and couldn’t stop.
All five children and both adults were thrown when Frye rear-ended their carriage, Michigan State Police say. A 2-year-old child and 6-year-old child died at the scene, investigators said.
The surviving passengers were taken to Parkview Hospital in Ft. Wayne, Indiana, and Bronson Methodist Hospital in Kalamazoo. A 4-year-old boy died Saturday at Bronson. A 3-year-old has life-threatening injuries. Both parents were seriously injured.
The names of the victims in the carriage have not been released.
In court documents, authorities say Frye admitted to rear-ending the carriage. When he was asked to take a field sobriety test, he refused, saying, “What’s the point? I have had too many.”
Investigators say later tests showed his blood alcohol level was .108 — well above the legal limit of .08.
Court documents indicate a search of Frye’s vehicle turned up a handgun.