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Driver sentenced to one year in prison for plowing car into crowd near Ball State campus

Early in the morning on Sept. 1, 2018, Keith Childress was caught on camera plowing his car into a crowd of people before fleeing the scene.

MUNCIE, Ind. — Note: The above video is of Sept. 4, 2018, news coverage of Keith Childress hitting at least three people with his car outside a bar in Muncie, Indiana. 

A Muncie man was sentenced to one year in prison and four years supervised probation for plowing his car into a crowd of people near Ball State University in 2018. 

Keith Childress is serving one year in prison for a battery charge filed in 2019. When this sentence is completed, he'll serve another year in prison followed by four years of probation.

The Incident

Authorities said on Sept. 1, 2018, an argument at Brothers Bar and Grill apparently spilled down Dill Street and escalated when Childress got in his car. 

He was caught on camera just after 3 a.m. hitting at least three people with his car in a parking lot next to the Be Here Now Bar in Muncie.

RELATED: Driver faces felony charges after plowing car into crowd near Ball State campus

The Muncie Police Department provided two cell phone videos from separate angles that showed a white Dodge Charger plowing into the crowd.

Childress first backed out of a parking spot as someone on foot banged on the car and cursed. But instead of exiting the lot, Childress's car lurched forward.

Three people were struck, knocked off their feet and thrown into the concrete wall of the building. The car continued forward, driving over a parking block. As the victims got back to their feet, the car backed out and fled the scene.

Childress sped away from the scene, then wrecked his new Charger while fleeing police. He fled on foot and was at large until turning himself in a few days later. 

Remarkably, no one suffered serious injuries in the incident. Only cuts, scrapes and bruises were reported.

A Guilty Plea

Three felonies and two misdemeanors were filed against Childress after the incident. 

In February of this year, Childress pleaded guilty to two of those charges: felony battery resulting in serious bodily injury and misdemeanor battery resulting in bodily injury.  

Credit: Muncie Police Department
Keith Childress was sentenced for two of five charges that were filed against him after he ran his car into a crowd in September of 2018 striking at least three people.

The other three charges, felony battery by means of a deadly weapon, felony leaving the scene of an accident with serious bodily injury, and misdemeanor leaving the scene of an accident with bodily injury, were all dismissed.

Sentencing

Childress was sentenced last Thursday. He will serve one year in prison followed by four years probation. He also has been ordered to pay $3,012 in restitution in addition to court fees. 

 

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