Woman charged in Alexander County school bus crash

Kimberly Ann Austin (Credit: Alexander County Sheriff's Department)

A woman has been charged in a school bush rollover that caused more than a dozen students to be hospitalized.

Kimberly Ann Austin, 56, was arrested and charged with two counts of misdemeanor child abuse following the crash.  North Carolina State Highway Patrol has charged her with driving while impaired and driving left of center.

The Alexander County Sheriff's Office says around 7:30 a.m. on Monday, Dec. 17 Austin was driving on Icard Ridge Road near NC 127 when she crossed the centerline, and collided with the school bus. The bus continued off the roadway and overturned.

LINK: Multiple students rushed to hospital after school bus rollover in Alexander County

According to Alexander County School officials, the bus was heading toward West Alexander Middle School. Officials said 13 of the 19 students on board the bus and Austin, were taken to the hospital for treatment. The remaining children were taken to school.

Austin is being held at the Alexander County Detention Center under a $10,000 secured bond. Her first court appearance is scheduled for January 28.