this day in crime history: may 14, 1988


On this day in 1988, an intoxicated driver named Larry Wayne Mahoney drove his pickup truck onto Interstate 71 in Kentucky. Mahoney was traveling north. In the southbound lane. Around 11:00 PM, he collided with a Church activity bus that was returning from a trip to the Kings Island amusement park. The crash caused a ruptured fuel tank, which resulted in the bus catching fire. Twenty-seven of the bus’s sixty-seven passengers were killed. Thirty-four more were injured. It was the deadliest drunk-driving accident in US history, and the second deadliest bus accident.

Mahoney was convicted of twenty-seven counts of manslaughter and sentenced to sixteen years in prison. He was released after serving just short of eleven years. A memorial next to Interstate 71 marks the site of the crash.

Further reading:

Wikipedia – Carrollton, Kentucky bus collision

The Cincinnati Enquirer – Drunken Driver Lives in Obscurity


9 thoughts on “this day in crime history: may 14, 1988

  1. 11 years for 27 counts of manslaughter. Pathetic. Mahoney should never see the outside world again. Seems like you can get more time for bagging and selling a plant than for taking a human life these days.


  2. John D.:
    My thoughts echo those of da_truth36 !

    While ALL of those people Killed by this drunk driver were indeed CRIMES (along with all the personal tragedies to family members associated with those killed), the REAL crime came at the sentencing.
    I could see this kind of travesty occurring in California, but Kentucky?

    Truly unbelievable.

    Stay safe.


      • Yes it did, my husband lived in a neighborhood that the driver frequented. My husband was a kid at the time but he says he was the neighborhood drunk and when it happen the whole neighborhood was in an up roar. They had complained to the police about him drinking and driving. No one did anything and now look. Thank you for posting this. It was a great conversation starter for my husband and I. It’s nice to talk about something other than, kids, dinner, bills, and whatever…So thanks.


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