Craven County school bus driver facing charges in deadly weekend accident

Bobby Williams, Goldsboro Daily News
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A Craven County school bus driver is facing charges after a weekend fatal accident in Wayne County.

Trooper Reginald Edwards says he will file death by motor vehicle and failure to yield charges against Tawana Lewis.

The 42-year-old Lewis was driving a bus carrying New Bern High School band members back from the 4-A championship football game when she attempted to make a U-turn on Highway 70 East, according to the trooper.

Edwards says an SUV was traveling east on the four-lane highway between 55 and 60 miles per hour when it crashed into the side of the bus without braking.

The SUV driver, 40-year-old Fabiel Betancourt of Goldsboro, died on impact.

Lewis is on paid leave from the school system as the accident is being investigated.


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Charges for a fatal Saturday morning wreck involving an SUV and a New Bern school activity bus could be filed this week.

Wayne County Trooper Reginald Edwards tells WITN the bus was carrying New Bern High School band members back from the 4-A championship football game when the bus driver attempted to make a U-turn on Highway 70 East and failed to yield.

Edwards says the SUV was traveling east on Highway 70 between 55 and 60 miles per hour when it crashed into the side of the bus without braking.

The driver of the GMC model SUV, 40-year-old Fabiel Betancourt, died on impact. Edwards says Betancourt lived in Goldsboro. An autopsy on Betancourt hasn't returned, yet.

Edwards says he will meet with the district attorney this week to determine if the bus driver, Tawana Lewis, will be charged.

Meanwhile, a spokesperson for Craven County Schools says the bus driver is on paid leave pending the investigation.


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A New Bern school bus was involved in a fatal accident with an SUV overnight.

According to Goldsboro dispatch, the call came in at 2:55 a.m.

It happened on Highway 70 near NC 581 in front of the Rosewood Walmart, just outside of Goldsboro.

Rosewood Fire Chief Steve Harrison says there were approximately 30 students on the bus, but none were injured. However, he says the driver of the SUV died at the scene. The victim had to be cut out of the SUV.

No other details about the victim were immediately available.

We're told a total of three buses carrying New Bern students back from the state championship game were traveling together.

Harrison says the bus that was struck appeared to be carrying band students, and band equipment was damaged in the crash.

Wayne County EMS, the Wayne County Sheriff's Office, Goldsboro police, and state highway patrol were all on the scene.

Traffic had to be diverted around the scene for about 5 hours.

Director of Public Relations Jennifer Wagner says the driver of the activity bus is on leave with pay pending the investigation.

New Bern High School beat Charlotte Catholic Friday night in the Class 4-A NC High School Athletic Association championship game.