Witnesses recall horrific Schoharie crash through tears
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A total of 22 witness had taken the stand at the Schoharie limo crash trial by late Thursday afternoon.
Limo company operator Nauman Hussain faces 20 counts of manslaughter and criminally negligent homicide for the Oct. 6, 2018 crash.
Jaclyn Schnurr was among the family members who testified. Her father and husband died in the Apple Barrel parking lot when the out-of-control limo slammed into them.
“We heard a noise, and it kept getting louder and louder. I saw a white blur coming toward my car, and I thought, ‘Please don’t hit my car,’” she testified. “The next thing I remember was being on the ground. (When I got up) I found my father in the brush on the edge of the parking lot. He was not alive. I never saw my husband.”
Schnurr’s brother-in-law, Daniel Bogan, took the witness stand next.
“I could see a blur of what happened. I saw my brother-in-law launch through the air, higher than the trees and launched over those trees, and I could see his face,” he said. “My family members were just wiped out. I could see Jackie (my sister) on all fours. She was screaming, ‘My family is gone.’”
The most compelling testimony came from Holly Wood, one of the few eyewitnesses to the crash. Wood said she reached the bottom of the hill at Route 30 near the Apple Barrel.
“I heard a godawful noise coming from behind me. It was just so loud and so unusual. I saw the limo coming right at us. So I froze, and I yelled at my daughter to hold on. I thought that was it,” Wood said. “When I told her to hold on, she looked up. The limo just missed us. When it hit the ravine, it literally went in the air and came back down. I told my daughter to call 911. I ran over to see if we could help.”
“She ran for the limo. I was running for the parking lot. She was on the phone with the operator. She was so upset that she handed me the phone. I took over the call. They asked me if I could do CPR. I told them I couldn’t,” she continued.
“Then, I could hear people saying one gentleman was still alive. I could hear him breathing. I told the operator I couldn’t do anything for them. They were gone,” she said. “Two gentlemen who opened the limo door told my daughter to stay back. From there, it was just chaos, pure chaos.”
Kim Lisinicchia, widow of limo driver Scott Lisinicchia, was also on the witness stand on Thursday.
She testified that Lisinicchia loved his job, always drove carefully, and cared about his passengers.
One of two senior state police investigators who took the stand Thursday, Erika Hock, testified she obtained a search warrant two-days after the crash and discovered a rumpled up out-of-service DOT sticker inside Hussain’s personal car.
NewsChannel 13 will continue to follow developments in court over the coming days. We will bring you updates on WNYT.com and our later newscasts.