Man accused in deadly crash indicted on federal charges

Man accused in deadly crash indicted on federal robbery, drug charges

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Tyler Schaeffer (source: Knox County Sheriff's Office) Tyler Schaeffer (source: Knox County Sheriff's Office)

KNOXVILLE (WATE) - The man who police say crashed his SUV into a church van, killing two, faces charges in what federal prosecutors call an armed robbery spree.

A federal grand jury handed down an indictment Tuesday charging Tyler Schaeffer on robbery charges, plus drug conspiracy and firearms charges.

Two others were also indicted in the case, 20-year-old Jerel Johnson and Rodney Ruffin.

Prosecutors say Schaeffer faces 107-years in prison.

He was arraigned in December on two counts of vehicular homicide in connection to the September 16 crash.

Tennessee Highway Patrol investigators say he was at the wheel of the SUV that crashed into a van from Cedar Grove Baptist Church. Schaeffer was on probation at the time.

The crash killed Youth Pastor Jeff Trussell and 16-year-old Courteney Kaliszewski.

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