The Media Communications Southeast Division of the Department of Public Safety has provided an update on Thursday afternoon's tragic fatality in Polk County. A 15-year-old Livingston ISD student perished in the accident after getting off a school bus at his home.

The accident involved the school bus, a Toyota vehicle that was stopped behind the bus, and a semi-trailer. The truck driver, 41-year-old Gregory Jackson of Texarkana, was arrested for criminal negligent homicide, a felony offense, as a result of the crash. Jackson was transported to the Polk County Jail.

Polk County Jail
Polk County Jail

According to a statement Thursday from the Department of Public Safety, the preliminary crash investigation indicates that at approximately 4:17 p.m., a Livingston ISD school bus was northbound on Highway 59 and stopped in the outside lane with its flashing red lights and stop sign extended to offload a child.

Behind the school bus was a Toyota passenger car. It is reported that a truck tractor semi-trailer was traveling north and struck the rear of the passenger car and then veered right, where he struck the child in the driveway.

The driver of the Toyota, identified as 28-year-old Autumn Witt of Lufkin, was not injured. The child, identified as a 15-year-old male, was pronounced deceased on scene by a Justice of the Peace.

That portion of Highway 59 was closed to traffic for many hours following the accident.

This investigation remains ongoing, and no additional information is available at this time. Please keep all those who were involved in or responded to this terrible accident in your prayers. 

Newstalk 860 logo
Get our free mobile app


East Texas Top Cold Case Homicides

According to the Department of Public Safety's website, these are the top unsolved cases in East Texas

Gallery Credit: Danny Merrell