Mohinder Singh, the truck driver involved in the Eastern Freeway crash in Melbourne, was severely sleep-deprived and high on drugs when he killed four police officers, reveals new court documents.
The 48-year-old pleaded guilty this week in the Melbourne Magistrates’ Court over the collision that left police officers Joshua Prestney, Kevin King, Lynette Taylor and Glen Humphris dead in April.
Singh is pleading guilty to 10 charges, including four counts of culpable driving causing death, along with drug trafficking and ammunition charges.
He was facing 37 charges, but most were withdrawn by prosecutors, reports the ABC.
Court documents reveal that before the incident, Singh was experiencing “significant levels of fatigue and impairment” because of drug use and his lifestyle.
On the day before the crash, and after leaving a depot at Thomastown, Singh pulled over the prime mover he was driving and injected methylamphetamine.
One man told investigators that Singh, who also went by the name Matt, had the “nods”, which refers to drifting off after using drugs.
The man said he warned Singh that he had to get some sleep.
“I told him, desperately. I told him that he had a lethal weapon. I used those words. I told him that he would kill someone if he didn’t get some sleep,” the man said.
“He just didn’t get it.”
In his police interview, Singh told investigators he was “sleeping at the time”.
“I was tired, couldn’t sleep cos I was seeing that witch was — that put a spell on me,” he said.
He later told investigators during his police interview: “I can still see them in front of my truck and I tried to slam the brakes on ’em and I couldn’t stop it, I couldn’t stop it.”
A fatigue expert now believes that Singh had just five hours of sleep in the three days leading up to the crash.
The court also heard that another man charged with manslaughter over the crash, trucking manager Simiona Tuteru, is planning to contest the allegations against him.