Troopers arrived on scene to find a 2000 Plymouth Neon that collided with the rear end of a 1967 Austin Mini Cooper. Purportedly the driver of the north bound Austin, Theodore Hochstetler, 15, of Bremen, had slowed down and was attempting to turn left into a private driveway when his vehicle was struck in the rear by the Neon. The driver of the Neon, Rick A. Willard, 52, of Nappanee, allegedly told a witness that he was distracted just prior to the impact and didn’t see the other vehicle slow down.
Willard was not injured in the crash. Both Hochstetler and his front seat passenger Johnny R. Kuhns, 45, of Bremen, were transported to Memorial Hospital in South Bend for injuries they sustained in the crash.
Initial investigation by the state police revealed that Hochstetler was driving his car without a driver’s license or permit. The crash investigation is ongoing and the findings will be forwarded to the Marshall County Prosecutors office for review. Alcohol or drugs do not appear to be a contributing factor in the crash.