Wrong-way driver kills at least 5 people on highway in Vermont

Five Teenagers were killed in a vehicle accident after a man drove down the wrong side of the highway and crashed into their auto late Saturday night.

When police arrived to investigate and put out the flames on the burning truck, police tell WCAX that Bourgoin then stole the cruiser of one of the distracted police officers and headed south toward Richmond with police lights on.

Rex identified the students as Eli Brookens of Waterbury, Janie Cozzi of Fayston, Liam Hale of Fayston, Mary Harris of Moretown, and Cyrus Zschau of Moretown.

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Harwood Union Middle and High School co-Principal Amy Rex says four of the five attended Harwood Union High School in Duxbury. "These students were vibrant members of our school community, actively involved and all with a promise for a bright future".

Henry said Steven Burgoin, 36, of Williston, was driving the Tundra north bound in the south bound lane on I-89 early Sunday morning, when he collided with a Volkswagen Jetta. When Richmond police attempted to intercept him, the suspect made a U-turn and again headed north in southbound lanes.

Five people were declared dead on scene of the crashes. Bourgoin then traveled northbound in the southbound lane back towards the original crash scene, striking seven vehicles.

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Henry could not immediately say if Bourgoin was under the influence of alcohol or drugs because the investigation was still ongoing and because Bourgoin needed hospitalization.

The alleged wrong-way driver, whose name is being withheld, was transported to the University of Vermont Medical Center for treatment. Police said none of the injuries appeared to be life-threatening.

Three neighboring fire departments provided mutual aid assistance with equipment and manpower, including covering the town while firefighters were committed to the interstate, Nadeau added.

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Previously, the victims wife Rakeiya Scott had released footage of the incident, where she was heard shouting that he was unarmed. Justin Bamberg, the attorney for the dead man's family, had viewed the police body cam and dash cam footage on Thursday.

Update: Sunday, Oct 9, 9:41 a.m.: I-89 has been reopened to traffic in both directions. Police had not determined whether Bourgoin was the driver who caused the initial crash.


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