Automotive

Driver Of Stolen BMW That Slammed Into A School Bus Sentenced To Two Years


Image for article titled Driver Of Stolen BMW That Slammed Into A School Bus Sentenced To Two Years

Photo: Spokane Valley Fire Department

Back in November, a man stole a car and managed to crash into a school bus so hard that it rolled, causing the bus driver to suffer from brain bleed. The man who caused all of this has been sentenced to two years in prison and ordered to pay restitution.

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On Nov. 22, Ryan Zumwalt arrived at an office’s private parking lot where he left his BMW E90 3 Series the night before. But his car was missing. Like anyone might think, he thought his car may have been towed. Instead, it was stolen. And it didn’t take long to learn about the vehicle’s fate.

Behind the wheel was Jeffrey Schelin, and as witnesses reported, he blew a stop sign before slamming into an IC Bus CE Series school bus operated by driver Blackhawk Delgado. The crash was so violent that it obliterated the BMW and bent the bus’ frame. Thankfully, the bus had no passengers onboard as it had already finished its route.


Image for article titled Driver Of Stolen BMW That Slammed Into A School Bus Sentenced To Two Years

Photo: Spokane Valley Fire Department

Unfortunately, that was only the beginning of Zumwalt’s troubles as he first faced a discrepancy with his insurance:

Zumwalt’s insurance allegedly downgraded the BMW from comprehensive to liability, meaning he will not be seeing a payout, from KHQ:

“I called my insurance company. And so, I’ve paid comprehensive coverage on this vehicle. And we got a vehicle probably four days before this happened, added it to our claim. And at that time, they switched the BMW to liability without talking with us,” he said.

Then he was ordered to pay $2,500 for cleanup associated with the crash. While there hasn’t been an update on whether Zumwalt will be made whole, there is an update on Schelin and the bus driver.

The Spokesman-Review reports that Schelin was sentenced last week in Spokane County Superior Court. He will spend 25 months in prison and is ordered to pay $17,773.37. He pled guilty to a laundry list of charges, including failure to remain at the scene of an accident with an injured person, possession of a stolen motor vehicle, second-degree burglary and second-degree malicious mischief. This is on top of existing charges before the crash for possession of a different stolen vehicle.

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Image for article titled Driver Of Stolen BMW That Slammed Into A School Bus Sentenced To Two Years

Photo: Spokane Valley Fire Department

And while things were bad for Zumwalt, Delgado came out the worst in all of this. Initial reports said that Delgado emerged from the wreck seemingly in good shape. Police reported Delgado to be uninjured after a hospital checkup.

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Unfortunately, the crash has left lasting damage. Things were fine for Delgado until a month later when he started convulsing. Doctors say that his brain had been bleeding since the crash. He currently suffers from memory loss and slow reactions, among other things.

I think the biggest takeaway from this update is to always take crashes seriously. Even if you feel fine, go ahead and get checked out at a hospital. Sadly, in this case it appears the checkup didn’t catch the damage done to Delgado. Hopefully, he will go on to make a recovery.

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