FindLaw Blotter - The FindLaw Crime and Criminals Blog

June 2011 Archives

Malnourished Monkeys Kept in Chicago Home

In yet another animal cruelty story out of Chicago, police seized two malnourished monkeys and five dogs from an elderly woman's home after being tipped off that they were being held in unsanitary conditions without the requisite food and water.

It turns out that the animals belonged to the woman's 46-year-old daughter, Rachel Birkenfeld, who has now been arrested and charged with possession of a dangerous animal and neglect.

Fla. Landlord Sets Tenant on Fire Over Late Rent

South Florida landlord Jonathan Steinberg is being held on aggravated battery charges after he reportedly set his tenant, Ronald Rohde, on fire after one too many late rent checks.

However, the incident, which allegedly involved a screwdriver to the back, might have additionally been motivated by other frustrations.

The pair also happen to be roommates.

Chris Vaughn's 'How to Stage a Murder' Article

It's been over four years since Christopher Vaughn allegedly killed his wife and their three kids on an interstate outside of Chicago. Still, little is known about his potential motives.

But new court documents released last week by Will County Judge Daniel Rozak demonstrate that investigators have known more than they were legally able to let on.

And that Vaughn may have been researching how to stage a murder so that it looks like a suicide.

Jurors Tour 'Serial Killer' Anthony Sowell's House

Alleged serial killer Anthony Sowell's trial has taken an exploratory turn, as members of the Sowell jury tours the house where bodies of 11 women were found.

Sowell, 51, has been charged with multiple murder counts. He was arrested in 2009 after decomposing bodies were found in his residence in the Mount Pleasant community in Cleveland, reports The Cleveland Plain Dealer.

The jury tour went through the basement and the three floors of the house. A crawl space in the basement hid the body of a woman who had been loosely buried under a pile of soil, as well as a body of another victim, reports The Plain Dealer.

Should Jared Loughner be Forcibly Drugged in Jail?

Should Jared Loughner be forcibly drugged? Loughner's mental competency has been the focus of his trial for the Tucson, Arizona shootings.

Loughner was declared mentally incompetent and unfit to stand trial. He has been in a federal facility ever since. Two doctors have independently come to the conclusion that Loughner is schizophrenic.

Because of his mental incompetency, Loughner's trial has been delayed until he can be found competent to stand trial. And that is why they are forcibly drugging him, according to defense attorney Judy Clark, reports the Courthouse News Service.

Rod Blagojevich Guilty of Corruption, Jury Finds

Former Illinois Rod Blagojevich is guilty of corruption. Rod Blagojevich's corruption trial has ended with a guilty jury verdict on 17 out of 20 charges of corruption that were levied against him.

The jury deliberated for 9 days before reaching its decision.

Blagojevich took the stand earlier during the trial, testifying for 7 days. He repeatedly denied the allegations of corruption during his testimony, reports the Chicago Sun-Times.

Casey Anthony Competent for Trial, Dr. Says

Psychologists have found Casey Anthony competent to stand trial. Casey Anthony's mental competency had come into question after her defense filed a motion for an evaluation.

Three court psychologists evaluated Anthony over the weekend, and all three found her competent. The presiding judge in the case made this announcement before the jury was seated.

If she had been found mentally incompetent, the trial would have been delayed.

Are Red-Light Cameras Legal?

Red-light camera lawsuits have been piling up nationwide in a variety of different jurisdictions. Which, can only beg the question - are red light cameras legal?

Red-light cameras are a fixture in many major cities across the U.S. The cameras dutifully snap up photos of drivers who zip across the road when the light is red - and in some cases, unfairly so, according to many opponents of red-light cameras.

Los Angeles, one of the nation's biggest cities, may be doing away with their red-light cameras soon if the city council does not agree to continue the program.

Ca. Mother Microwaved Baby to Death, Cops Say

Concluding a three month investigation into the death of a 6-week old infant, Sacramento police arrested the girl's mother on Thursday, accusing her of following in the footsteps of other mothers that have been prosecuted for microwave baby deaths.

The mother, Ka Yang, is denying any wrongdoing, and, with the death penalty possibly an option, appears to be setting herself up for an insanity defense.

Sweat Lodge Deaths: Guru Guilty of Homicide

The Arizona sweat lodge death verdict has come down, with a jury finding James Arthur Ray guilty of negligent homicide in the deaths of 3 people in his self-help seminar back in 2009.

Ray, a self-help guru, had been one of the rising stars in the $11 billion industry before the tragic deaths. He previously appeared on "The Oprah Winfrey Show" and "Larry King Live," with his self-help ventures bringing in about $10 million annually.

The sweat lodge deaths resulted from one of Ray's self-help seminars. About 56 participants had paid up to $10,000 each to attend a "Spiritual Warrior" seminar, lasting about 5 days, the Los Angeles Times reports. They had all signed waivers acknowledging that death was a risk in their participation.

Fla. Death Penalty Ruling: Affect Casey Anthony?

What effect will the recent ruling on the Florida death penalty have on Casey Anthony's potential sentence? For Casey Anthony, a death sentence is a real possibility if she is found guilty of first-degree murder, as prosecutors have been pursuing capital punishment.

Anthony is currently standing trial for the murder of her daughter, Caylee Anthony, who was two years old at the time.

Now, a Florida judge has ruled that the Florida death penalty procedure is unconstitutional. Though, the impact on Anthony's case may be minimal at best.

Utah Suspect's Facebook Friend Aided in Crime?

This is a story of one Jason Valdez, Facebook, and his particularly dense friends.

While involved in a 16-hour armed standoff with police in Ogden, Utah, Valdez continuously updated his Facebook status from his phone.

Though most of his friends encouraged him to surrender, a few decided to take the opportunity to tell him about SWAT movement outside of his motel room.

That's a crime.

'The Departed': Mobster Whitey Bulger Arrested by FBI

On the run for 16 years, James "Whitey" Bulger, the inspiration for Jack Nicholson's character in the 2006 mafia film The Departed, was caught in Santa Monica, California on Wednesday.

A member of the FBI's "Ten Most Wanted" list, Whitey was apprehended along with his longtime girlfriend Catherine Greig a day after the agency launched a media blitz requesting information on their whereabouts.

What's going to happen to them now?

NJ Prof. Arrested: Reviewed Prostitutes as 'Hobby'

David Flory, a long-time physics professor at Fairleigh Dickinson University in New Jersey, was arrested on Sunday after police concluded an investigation into his self-described "hobby."

Flory admitted to running a website, Southwest Companions, that caters to both prostitutes and Johns, encouraging solicitation, sex for money, and the rating of prostitutes.

Unfortunately, the Associated Press reports that he made very little money.

Top 3 Reasons Casey Anthony Should Not Testify

Will Casey Anthony testify? Should she?

Those who think that Casey Anthony should testify point to opening remarks made by defense attorney Jose Baez in which he asserted that Anthony was the victim of sexual abuse and that her father helped her cover up Caylee's drowning death.

Casey is the only one willing to testify to these assertions.

Even so, there are plenty of reasons Casey Anthony should stay off the stand, including the following three.

Ferret Chews Baby's Fingers: Mo. Parents Charged

It's a bit out of the ordinary when a ferret chews fingers off of an infant, but for allowing just that to happen, Missouri parents Carrie and Ryan Waldo have been charged with first-degree child endangerment, a felony.

The incident, which occurred in January, originally appeared to be an accident. But after an investigation and a peek into the couple's cell phone records, it was readily apparent to law enforcement that something more akin to neglect had occurred.

NC Man Robs Bank for $1 for Free Jail Health Care

Would you rob a bank for health care? James Verone did.

Verone walked into the RBC Bank in North Carolina last week. When he arrived, he gave the teller a note that said he was robbing the bank - and to please give him $1.

Unemployed and uninsured, Verone is 59 years old. He has a growth on his chest, two ruptured disks and a problem with his left foot, reports the Los Angeles Times. He thought that if he robbed the bank, he would get thrown into jail, where he would have access to a doctor.

Bronx Teacher Used Belt to Break Up Student Fight

Given that extreme corporal punishment in school is generally a thing of the past, the idea of a Bronx teacher, belt in hand, smacking two elementary school students is pretty preposterous.

But it apparently happened at Benjamin Franklin Public School in New York when, faced with a student-on-student brawl, teacher Pedro Molano allegedly decided to use his belt instead of his words.

He's now being charged with assault, but appears not to have lost his job.

Cat Piercing for Goth Look is Animal Cruelty

Giving a cat piercings to make it look like a "goth" cat is animal cruelty, at least according to the court in Pennsylvania.

Holly Crawford is a dog groomer who thought she would try to make her cats look more "gothic" by giving them piercings, reports The New York Times.

The piercings were on a variety of the kittens' bodies, including piercings through the cat's ears and the scruffs of their necks. Crawford even had tied elastic around the cat's tail, in order to "dock" the tail, essentially stopping the blood flow to the tail so that the tail would fall off eventually, reports The New York Times.

Baggy Pants Arrest for Football Player at SFO

What's a baggy pants arrest?

Apparently it occurs when University of New Mexico football player Deshon Marman is escorted off a US Airways flight in San Francisco after repeatedly refusing to pull up his pants at the request of a flight attendant.

Seem silly?

It is, but it also means that he's being charged with trespassing and resisting arrest.

Robbers Storm House After Facebook Cash Photo

Social media sites like Facebook can blast updates to everybody in your social circle - friends, family, coworkers... and robbers. A Facebook post was allegedly behind a home invasion in Illinois.

A woman posted a picture on her Facebook account showing her with a large sum of cash she had just received from a civil car accident lawsuit, reports the AP.

Police believe that the robbers were motivated to rob the woman when they saw the Facebook posting, according to the AP.

What to Expect at a Preliminary Hearing

If you're curious about what happens during a preliminary hearing, you've come to the right place.

Also known as a "trial before the trial" or a mini-trial, a preliminary hearing is typically the second step in criminal court proceedings.

It also may be one of the most important steps, as it helps determine whether or not the prosecutors have enough evidence to send a defendant to trial.

NY Child Rape Images: 25 Arrested for Rape Porn

Dozens have been arrested in New York for possessing and sharing child rape images. The arrest follows a lengthy investigation by the district attorney's office and the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement office. The offending images were not merely of child pornography, but are more aptly described as child sexual abuse photos.

The arrested defendants come from all walks of life and range from age 18 to 63. They include a lawyer, a dishwasher, a deli worker, a shoe store worker, and a substitute teacher who worked in public schools in Manhattan, reports The New York Times.

The defendants used peer-to-peer technology, most commonly used in downloading music and movies, to share the images, according to CNN.

Phila. Mom Tried to Hire Hit Man on Facebook

A Philadelphia woman, Eley London, 20, was mad at her child's father. She was so mad that she tried to hire a Facebook hit man to kill him.

Amazingly, she posted a status update that read, "I will pay somebody a stack to kill my baby father," reports NBC Philadelphia. A "stack" is around $1,000.

Clearly not your average Facebook status update. But there was also not an average Facebook status update response to follow.

Tim Bynum, 18, allegedly responded to London's status update agreeing to carry out the deed.

Blow-Up Doll Prank: Tyell Morton Faces Felony

A bit of indulgence in a senior tradition has left 18-year-old student Tyell Morton facing 8 years behind bars because authorities can't find the humor in a blow-up doll prank.

After spotting the student on surveillance footage, officials at Morton's Indiana high school called in the state bomb squad.

All they found was a plastic doll, but he's still being charged with felony criminal mischief.

Clad in a hooded sweatshirt and latex gloves, Tyell Morton was caught on surveillance camera by Rushville High School officials carrying a package into a girls' bathroom, reports UPI. A few minutes later, he left the restroom empty-handed.

Johannes Mehserle Protestors Sue Oakland Police

A Johannes Mehserle protest lawsuit has been filed. The class action litigation has been filed against the Alameda County Sheriff's Office and the Oakland Police Department. The class action was filed on behalf of about 150 protestors who claim their rights were violated by the law enforcement agencies.

Johannes Mehserle is the ex-BART police officer who shot and killed Oscar Grant in 2009, reports KTVU-TV. Grant, 22, was unarmed at the time. Mehserle maintains that he thought he was reaching for his stun gun, but accidentally fired his service weapon and killed Grant.

Mehserle was convicted of involuntary manslaughter. He was sentenced to two years in prison, and was released Monday, reports KTVU-TV.

DUI Checkpoint Apps Banned by Apple, not Google

After months of requests from U.S. Senators Charles Schumer and Harry Reid, Apple has finally given in and decided to impose a partial ban on any new DUI checkpoint apps submitted to its App Store.

Unlike Apple, Google is remaining steadfast in its decision, and will continue to sell the apps, which provide users with real time alerts of DUI checkpoint locations around town.

The main concern with DUI checkpoint apps has been that they encourage and enable driving under the influence by allowing users to avoid local law enforcement.

Girl, 5, Drowns Crying Toddler: Murder Charge?

Can a child commit murder? A 5-year-old girl from Kansas City, Missouri has reportedly told investigators that she purposefully drowned Jermane Johnson Jr., an 18-month old toddler.

Johnson and the 5-year-old girl were cousins, reports MSNBC. The children were left in the care of a 16-year-old babysitter, who had fallen asleep when the incident occurred.

The 5-year-old told investigators that she did not like Johnson because he cried too much. After the adults left the house with the children in the care of the 16-year-old, the 5-year-old dragged Johnson to the bathtub which hadn't been drained. He later drowned.

SWAT-like Raid to Serve Student Loan Fraud Warrant

After spending hours in a patrol car with his young children, Kenneth Wright claimed that a SWAT team had broken into his Stockton home on Tuesday morning in order to execute a student loan warrant after his estranged wife failed to pay her bills.

While his house was searched, it was not by a SWAT team, and it wasn't because his wife failed to make loan payments.

It turns out that the raid was the handiwork of the Department of Education's Office of Inspector General, which is conducting an investigation into student loan fraud.

Weinergate: Are Political Sex Scandals Illegal?

With Weinergate still on the radar and John Edward's recent indictment, political sex scandals are all the rage. They are certainly sordid and in terrible taste. But, the questions on many Americans' minds may just be: Are sex scandals illegal? Are there any sex scandal laws out there?

Not really. It's not illegal for a private citizen to cheat on his wife - though it is morally reprehensible.

When you think about the legal ramifications of sex scandals, it's not that they violated some sex scandal law - it's that they did something illegal in conjunction with the scandal.

Fleeing Police by Car is a Violent Felony

The Supreme Court has ruled that fleeing police is a violent felony.

In a 6-3 decision in Sykes v. United States, Marcus Sykes was appealing his enhanced federal sentence under the Armed Criminal, Career Criminal Act. The Act meant that Sykes got a mandatory minimum 15-year sentence that was enhanced due to his prior felonies - one of them being fleeing from police, reports CNN.

Sykes had been seen by officers driving at night without headlights. When police flashed their emergency sirens, he took off, starting a chase that included Sykes ramming through a fence and crashing into a house, reports CNN.

Ohio Statutory Rape Law Struck Down

Is statutory rape unconstitutional when it occurs between two minors? Apparently so under Ohio's statutory rape law. The Ohio Supreme Court has ruled that the law, as applied between two children under the age of 13, was unconstitutional.

The case was brought to the Ohio Supreme Court after a conviction in juvenile court of five counts of statutory rape against a boy, identified as D.B. The boy, 12, had engaged in anal sex with another boy, M.G., 11, several times in 2007, reports The Plain Dealer.

D.B. was found to be the "instigator" of the incidents, and was also described as being taller and heavier than the younger boy. Both boys had admitted to consenting to the sex. Another boy, A.W., 12, a witness and one-time participant of the boys' sexual activities, reportedly said that the incidents were consensual as well, reports The Plain Dealer.

Cop Gives Jurors Mints: Is That a Mistrial?

There was almost a mistrial over mints in the Michael Crawford trial in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Crawford is the estranged brother of Linda Thompson, mayor of Harrisburg. He is standing on trial for fraud.

Danny Fiber, a police witness and lead investigator in the case, had been called to testify. When the judge and the two attorneys were in a private sidebar going over some evidentiary issues, Fiber pulled out a can of Altoids, reports the Sentinel Reporter.

Fiber said that a juror spotted his mints, and then gave him an "up nod," according to the Sentinel Reporter.

Patti LaBelle Airport Attack Case Reopened

Some mistakes might have been made during an investigation into the Patti LaBelle airport attack.

Richard King, 23, is now suing the singer, alleging that he was beaten by her security guards on her command. LaBelle's bodyguards had originally told Houston police that King was intoxicated and he instigated the attack by throwing the first punch, reports Fox News. King was named as a suspect in the original police investigation.

However, King's attorneys have now released some surveillance footage of the incident which seems to paint an entirely different story, reports KRIV-TV.

Cops Can't Write Red Light Tickets in Florida

There seems to be some good news for those who fear Florida red light tickets.

A judge in Broward County has ruled that red light tickets written by police officers, as opposed to those issued by red light cameras, are unconstitutional under both the Florida and U.S. Constitutions.

The reason? The disparate punishment between police-written and red light camera tickets runs afoul of both documents' equal protection clauses.

No Texas Mass Grave on Psychic's Tip

[UPDATE 10:50 ET: Deputies swarmed the Texas farmhouse and found no evidence of even a single homicide, a sheriff's official told the AP. A person claiming to be a psychic told officials multiple bodies were buried there. A Liberty County Sheriff's spokesman says cadaver dogs  did not detect any bodies on the rural property about 70 miles northeast of Houston.]

A potential Texas mass grave with up to 25-30 dismembered bodies is being investigated by authorities. While no children's bodies have yet been found at the residence, the potential grave site is in rural Liberty County in East Texas, reports the Houston Chronicle.

A psychic tip had led authorities to the home, according to media reports. The sheriff's department had earlier received a phone call about a mass grave with several bodies. After they checked the area and found nothing, the caller went back and told authorities that they "went to the wrong house," reports the Houston Chronicle.

Neighbors said authorities were at the home of Joe Bankston, a long-haul trucker who is traveling with his wife. Seemingly perplexed at why investigators were at his house, he said "I haven't killed anybody, and I have a lot of friends, but I haven't helped anybody bury any bodies," reports the Houston Chronicle.

Summer Music Festivals: Avoid a Bonnaroo Arrest

Coachella may be long gone, but Bonnaroo kicks off this week. And the list of summer music festivals appears to be never ending.

Between Sasquatch, Bonnaroo, Lollapalooza, Electric Daisy Carnival, and Outside Lands (just to name a few), you've got plenty of time to get drunk and naked this summer while listening to some great (and let's face it--not so great) music.

But be careful, among those thousands converging for the concerts will be police and law enforcement, too. With recent crackdowns on raves and concerns about underage drug use at large music events, expect to see police and security out in full force.

In other words, do yourself a favor and read below. It'll help you avoid any arrests for public intoxication or indecent exposure.

Facebook Party Leads Cops, 1,500 to Teen's Home

A teenage girl's Facebook party invitation turned viral. Thessa, 16, of Hamburg, Germany, mistakenly forgot to mark her Facebook birthday party invitation as "private." As a result, about 15,000 people RSVPed for Thessa's birthday party.

Out of the 15,000 who marked they were coming to the event, 1,500 actually showed up at Thessa's house, reports the AP.

Thessa's parents had canceled the party after they found out about the mass number of RSVPs, and had contacted local police and hired private security to keep their house safe.

What is a Criminal Indictment?

What is an indictment, and how does the indictment process go? News about John Edwards' recent indictment over allegations that he misused campaign funds is splashed all over the headlines.

But, what is it that leads up to a criminal indictment in the first place?

The criminal indictment process begins with a grand jury. A grand jury is one type of jury that is brought in to analyze some of the evidence brought by the prosecution to determine if the case should be brought to trial.

Tennessee Netflix Law: Password Sharing a Crime

A Netflix law just hit the books. As of July 1 in Tennessee, Netflix password sharing can net you a misdemeanor conviction punishable by a $2,500 fine and/or a year behind bars.

And for repeat offenders? Well, they can look forward to felony charges and harsher punishments.

Tennessee residents, you have none other than the recording industry to thank for these changes.

Tennessee's new law doesn't just apply to Netflix password sharing, but instead makes it a crime to share passwords for subscription-based streaming sites, such as a Netflix, Hulu and Rhapsody, reports the Los Angeles Times.

Yale Student Annie Le's Killer Gets 44 Years

Raymond Clark III, 26, has received a 44-year sentence without eligibility for parole for the killing of Yale student Annie Le.

Le, 24, was murdered in 2009. A doctoral pharmacology student, her body was found upside down behind a wall at the research lab on the Yale campus where she worked. Her body was found the same day that she was to be married.

Clark was an animal research technician at the lab. He cleaned the mouse cages where Annie Le and other doctoral pharmacology students performed research on enzymes that could have impact on cancer treatments, diabetes, and muscular dystrophy, according to the AP.

John Edwards Trial Unlikely: Expect a Plea

Is John Edwards' trial really going to happen? If so, what will John Edwards' defense be concerning the alleged misuse of campaign funds to cover up his affair and pregnancy with Rielle Hunter?

Edwards was indicted Friday on felony charges for soliciting and using up to $925,000 to hide Rielle Hunter and her pregnancy during his 2008 presidential nomination campaign.

The indictment came down after negotiations between Edwards' attorneys and prosecutors failed. They had been trying to agree on a charge that Edwards could plead guilty to. Prosecutors wanted Edwards to plead guilty on a felony charge, which would have put his legal license at jeopardy, reports the AP.

Crack Sentences to be Reduced Retroactively?

Attorney General Eric Holder has made it clear that the Obama Administration supports retroactively lowering crack sentences for offenders who are already behind bars. But only if the offenders didn't use a firearm in the crime and don't have lengthy criminal records.

With a few caveats, Holder's plan would lead to the early release of about 6,000 prisoners. But before it can be put into action, the Commission must agree, and then Congress must vote.

However, the Fair Sentencing Act only applies to new sentences, which means that the Sentencing Commission and Congress must now decide whether to apply it retroactively.

NYPD, FDNY Busted in Staten Island Gambling Ring

The FBI has busted a Staten Island gambling ring and landed some of New York's finest behind bars. Several of the culprits were current and former members of the FDNY and NYPD. The Staten Island gambling operation included over 15 members and several locations, each amassing more than $2,000 in revenues a day.

A NYPD detective sold gambling chips, while the two FDNY firefighters dealt cards, according to the indictment. And, some of the other NYPD and FDNY members involved helped provide security and "muscle" for the gambling operation, reports MSNBC.

Among the arrested were a police detective, two firefighters, a retired police sergeant and a retired firefighter, all with the NYPD or FDNY, reports The New York Times.

Man Flipped 'The Finger' at Cops: Charges Dropped

Maybe you've flipped someone the middle finger in your life. Maybe not. Denver's Shane Boor gave a cop the finger recently. How did the authorities respond to his conduct? A criminal harassment charge. But, the charges have been dropped by the state trooper's superiors, as giving the middle finger to police is not exactly a crime.

According to many experts, it's actually constitutionally-protected free speech.

So, why did Boor even give the trooper the finger? Boor, 35, was on his way to work when he saw the state trooper pull over another driver back in April, reports KDVR-TV.

Are Warrantless Cell Phone Searches Legal?

Though state and federal courts are divided on the issue, it seems as though warrantless cell phone searches are spreading across the country at an alarming rate.

How is this even legal?

According to courts in California, Florida and Georgia, warrantless cell phone searches are justified under the "search incident to a lawful arrest" exception to the 4th Amendment's warrant requirement.

Because the Supreme Court has not ruled on the issue of warrantless cell phone searches, there is still a lot of confusion amongst courts and civil rights advocates.

Beer Pong Argument Leaves Fireman Stabbed Dead

We all know that drinking games and intoxication can lead to arguments or fights. Unfortunately, a deadly mix of beer pong and stabbing can also lead to murder. After a beer pong argument, William Walker, 21, of Cherry Hill, New Jersey, was killed by a fellow party-goer.

Walker was a volunteer firefighter. He had also worked as a medic in Atlantic City, and had dreams of becoming a professional firefighter, reports the Philadelphia Inquirer.

Naqeebullah Habibi, 19, is accused of the fatal stabbing. The two were attending a party when the argument over the game of beer pong occurred, the Inquirer reports.

Nun Masks from 'The Town' Used in Chicago Robbery

If you've seen the Ben Affleck heist movie "The Town," then this news story might seem a bit like déjà vu. Wearing nun masks, robbers hit a Chicago bank last week.

It's a scene that seems to be taken straight out of the film. There's an incredibly eerie similarity between the posters for "The Town" and the surveillance footage of the masked, habit-wearing nun robbers.

The duo of robbers entered the bank (TCF Bank), jumped the counter, and ordered the teller and manager to fill a duffel bag with the cash from the vault, reports the New York Daily News.

Sky Express Bus Driver Charged: Reckless Driving

Virginia police have arrested Kin Yiu Cheng, the Sky Express bus driver responsible for yesterday's passenger bus crash that has left four women dead and at least 54 other passengers injured.

Determining that driver fatigue was at least partially responsible for the deadly crash, prosecutors have charged Cheng with reckless driving.

He's lucky that he hasn't been charged with manslaughter.

According to some sources, Kin Yiu Cheng fell asleep at the wheel before veering off the I-95 early Tuesday morning. Having left North Carolina at 10:30 p.m., the Sky Express bus driver was headed for New York City.