Truck driver charged after NC family of 4 killed in fiery wreck

PRINCETON, W.Va. (AP/WVNS) – An Illinois truck driver is facing charges in an interstate crash that killed a family of four from North Carolina in southern West Virginia.

Bertram Copeland of Rockford, Illinois, was arraigned on four counts of negligent homicide and reckless driving. He’s now free on bond, said West Virginia State Police Sgt. C.F. Kane.

CLICK FOR PHOTOS OF THE FAMILY AND CRASH

EARLIER: NC family of 4 dies in crash on I-77 in West Virginia

Police say that last April, Copeland’s tractor-trailer crossed the median and struck an SUV carrying the Gilley family of Salisbury North Carolina, then rolled onto its side and caught fire.

David and Christine Gilley and their children, Jack and Grace, all died. They had been driving to Ohio to visit family, WBTV reported.

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Copeland suffered several broken bones and was airlifted to a hospital after the wreck.

Mercer County Prosecutor George Sitler said the charges were filed because there are indications from eye witnesses that Copeland’s actions may not have been appropriate once he lost control of his vehicle.

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