Limo Crash Killing 20: Operator Guilty Of Manslaughter In NY Wreck, Jury Finds

More than four years after 20 people were killed in a limousine crash in upstate New York, a jury has convicted the limo company’s operator on nearly two dozen charges of manslaughter.

The aftermath of a limousine crash in Schoharie, New York that killed 20 people on October 6, 2018.
The aftermath of a limousine crash in Schoharie, New York that killed 20 people on October 6, 2018. Photo Credit: National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB)

Nauman Hussain was found guilty on all 20 charges of second-degree manslaughter in Schoharie County Court on Wednesday, May 17, stemming from the October 2018 crash that claimed the lives of 17 passengers, the limo driver, and two pedestrians.

The Capital Region wreck happened in the town of Schoharie, located about 25 miles west of Albany, in Schoharie County.

It was the deadliest crash in the US in nearly a decade - on land or in the air - since the Feb. 12, 2009 crash of Colgan Air Flight 3407 in Buffalo, which killed 49 people.

Investigators said the SUV-style stretch limousine, operated by Prestige Limousine, was going more than 100 miles per hour when its brakes failed.

The limo crossed through the intersection of State Route 30 and Route 30A and slammed into an unoccupied vehicle.

The impact was so severe it killed 17 people in the limo celebrating a birthday, along with the driver and two bystanders.

The limousine had failed a DMV inspection a month prior to the crash and should not have been on the road, the governor’s office later said.

Officials also confirmed that the driver of the limousine did not have the proper license to be operating the vehicle.

Congresswoman Elise Stefanik, whose 21st District includes Schoharie County, later questioned FBI Director Christopher Wray over the agency’s relationship with the limousine company’s owner, Shahid Hussein, who had served as an FBI informant.

Stefanik accused the FBI of turning a blind eye on Hussein, who is reported to have falsified safety inspection reports at the company in the months leading up to the crash.

In September 2022, a Schoharie County judge rejected a plea deal that called for Nauman Hussain to serve four years of probation and no prison time for pleading guilty to 20 counts of criminally negligent homicide.

During the six-day trial prosecutors brought 24 witnesses, including experts who blamed catastrophic brake failure from improper maintenance, Albany station WRGB reports.

Following Wednesday’s verdict, Hussain was ordered held at the Schoharie County jail until his sentencing, which is scheduled for Wednesday, May 31.

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