CHESTER COUNTY, S.C. — Two grieving families have waited years for justice for loved ones killed in car accidents in Chester County.
Now, in two unrelated tragic crashes, a grand jury has decided the drivers should be held responsible for their deaths.
On Sept. 24, 2015, an 18-wheeler driven by Cedric Abram crossed the grass median on Interstate 77 and hit a pickup truck head-on, killing the driver, Brian Scott Brown.
Abram was never charged in the incident but was just indicted after new evidence surfaced in the case. Solicitor Randy Newman decided to bring the case to the grand jury.
"We have to prove he drove that vehicle with a reckless disregard for the safety of others," he told Channel 9. "We think we now have enough evidence to move forward."
The indictment against Abram, obtained by Channel 9, states he drove the 18-wheeler knowing he had a medical condition that caused him to lose control of the truck.
Newman said it's not uncommon for prosecutors to seek a direct indictment when a case develops.
"There are times when law enforcement brings us a case and we say, 'Keep investigating' for whatever reason. There may not be enough evidence," Newman said.
On Thursday night, William David Brown was arrested and charged with reckless homicide after a grand jury indictment.
Brown was involved in a 2016 crash on Highway 97 that killed Adam Swygart.
Court records show Swygart's family sued Brown and his employer, Truvista, the Chester phone company, because Brown was in a work truck when he hit Swygart.
The civil suit was settled last fall for an undisclosed amount.
The families of both victims are still waiting for justice. Newman said that's always been his goal.
"Hopefully once we've moved forward with prosecution, we'll get these families the closure that they deserve," he said.
If convicted of reckless homicide, Brown and Abram could each spend 10 years in prison.
Channel 9 reached out to the lawyers representing the families of both victims, but they were not available for comment.
Also, following the indictment against Brown, there are two new civil lawsuits.
Two other victims of that 2016 crash who were injured, Paul Hammonds and Steven Jones, are seeking damages from Brown and Truvista.
The lawsuits were filed May 24.
Cox Media Group