A truck driver who killed four police officers when he lost control of his semi-trailer on a busy Melbourne freeway may have allegedly been on drugs at the time.
Police are investigating whether Mohinder Singh Bajwa was under the influence of an illicit substance after an ice pipe was found inside the front cabin.
Mr Singh Bajwa was behind the wheel of a refrigerated chicken truck on Wednesday afternoon when he ploughed into two police cars, who had pulled over an allegedly speeding Porsche 911.
The Herald Sun reports that just moments after the crash, Mr Singh Bajwa was heard to say: ‘I was looking down in the cabin and I looked up and they were just there.’
He then suffered a medical episode, collapsing to the ground.
Chicken truck driver Mohinder Singh Bajwa (pictured) from Cranbourne in Melbourne’s south-east, remains under police guard in hospital as he recovers from a medical episode he suffered after Wednesday’s crash
Pictured from left to right: Senior Constable Kevin King, Constable Glen Humphris, Senior Constable Lynette Taylor,and Constable Josh Prestney, were killed in the crash
Mr Singh Bajwa, from Cranbourne in Melbourne’s south-east, remains under police guard in hospital, two days after veering into the freeway emergency lane near Kew at a speed of about 100km/h.
The truck smashed into two parked cars, instantly killing leading Senior Constable Lynette Taylor, Constable Glen Humphris, Senior Constable Kevin King and Constable Josh Prestney.
Mr Bajwa is reported to have suffered a ‘medical episode’ and ‘blacked out’ following the crash and has been unable to speak to police.
‘He’s unfit to be interviewed at this stage. We don’t know whether that will be today or in the next couple of days,’ Victoria Police Deputy Commissioner Shane Patton said on Friday.
‘The families are obviously shattered and need answers,’ he added.
Police refused to comment on the man’s condition or whether or not he is conscious.
Mr Bajwa’s home was raided on Wednesday night following the crash but police are yet to reveal what they found.
The four police officers who were killed had pulled over a Porsche 911 which was allegedly speeding at 140km/h about 4.50pm.
Investigators believe the truck veered into the freeway emergency lane at a speed of about 100km/h
The truck smashed into two parked cars, instantly killing four police officers
Timeline of what happened: Officers intercepted the Porsche on the eastern Freeway about 4.50pm. By 5.40pm, the refrigeration truck had ploughed into the three cars, killing four officers
About 50 minutes later, Mr Bajwa’s semi-trailer veered into the emergency lane and struck the stopped cars.
Police on Thursday said it was still ‘too early’ to say what caused the crash and won’t be able to provide answers until they speak with Mr Bajwa.
‘He is from Cranbourne and we did a warrant through the night at his premises. What was found at that premises is still the subject of ongoing investigation,’ Victorian Police Commissioner Graham Ashton said.
Police took a blood sample and Mr Ashton said the truck driver did not have any sort of extensive criminal history.
It travelled a short distance in the shoulder lane until it collided with the three stopped cars.
Richard Pusey, the driver of a Porsche who allegedly fled the scene of a truck crash on Melbourne’s Eastern Freeway, is taken away from his Fitzroy property by police on Thursday
The smashed up Porsche: Police said the luxury car’s driver, 41, had an ‘extensive’ criminal history and was known to police
‘[It] slammed into the rear of the highway patrol vehicle which has caused the collision. (It) proceeded to include the investigation from the RP desk unit and indeed the 911 Porsche,’ Mr Ashton said.
‘The highway patrol vehicle was spun from that accident across the freeway into the centre of the freeway and the Porsche has wound up underneath the front of the truck.’
Mr Bajwa’s university student son, Gurdeep, declined to comment on Thursday.
‘I’m not able to talk to anyone, not able to share any comments,’ he said.
‘I’m not able to speak’.
Connect Logistics, the company which owns the truck, did not answer calls. The investigation continues.
The Porsche driver has since been identified as mortgage broker Richard Pusey, 41, from Frankston.
Mr Bajwa – pictured with his wife – is under police guard in hospital. Victoria Police are yet to determine what led to the deadly crash
He survived the crash, allegedly took video of the scene – which surfaced on social media – and fled on foot, police claimed.
Mr Pusey was arrested at Chemist Warehouse in Collingwood about 9.30am on Thursday more than 12 hours since the incident.
He is scheduled to appear in Melbourne Magistrates Court on Friday.
He was charged with driving at a dangerous speed, reckless conduct endangering life, failing to remain after a drug test, failing to render his assistance, failing to exchange his details, possessing a drug of dependence, destruction of evidence and three counts of committing indictable offence while on bail.