At approximately 8 a.m. Tuesday, officers from the Indiana State Police, the Miami County Sheriff’s Department, and the Peru Police Department responded to a three vehicle crash at the intersection of U.S. 24 and Broadway Street, in which a 12-year-old Miami County girl was killed.
The preliminary crash investigation by Indiana State Police Sergeant Rick Brown revealed that Scott Baker, 62, Eaton, IN, was driving a 2006 Freightliner semi-tractor, pulling a box trailer, eastbound on U.S. 24. The semi-tractor was approaching a stoplight at Broadway Street. Kristina Buffington, 31, Peru, IN, was driving a 2003 Ford Explorer. The Explorer was facing westbound, in a turn lane, waiting to turn southbound onto Broadway Street. The east/west U.S. 24 traffic signal turned red. The Explorer turned onto southbound Broadway. The semi-tractor did not stop for the red light and entered the intersection. The semi-tractor struck the Explorer in the passenger side. After impact, the Explorer spun into a 2017 Chevrolet Cruz which was driven by Jayson Hall, 43, Peru, IN. The Cruz was facing northbound on Broadway Street, in a turn lane, waiting to turn eastbound onto U.S. 24.
Baker was not injured. Kristina Buffington was flown from the crash scene, via medical helicopter, to a Ft. Wayne hospital. She suffered life threatening injuries. Devin Buffington, 8, Peru, IN, a passenger in the Explorer, was also flown from the crash scene to a Ft. Wayne hospital. He suffered facial and head injuries but is in stable condition. Amanda Buffington, 12, Peru, IN, also a passenger in the Explorer, was pronounced dead, at the scene. Despite life saving measures by first responders, she succumbed to injuries sustained in the crash. Hall was transported from the crash scene, via ambulance, to a Peru hospital. He was later flown, via medical helicopter, to a Ft Wayne hospital with life threatening injuries.
This crash is still under investigation, but at this time it does not appear the consumption of alcohol nor narcotics contributed to the crash.
“We are currently in the infancy of the crash investigation,” stated Indiana State Police Sergeant Rick Brown. “Our crash reconstruction team will analyze the evidence collected and prepare a report for the Miami County prosecutor’s office to review.”
Baker was hauling scrap for OJC Trucking based in Hartford City, IN.