Maryland family killed in second I-80 accident near Potter Sunday

Aftermath of a deadly I-80 accident Sunday near Potter. (Courtesy: Sidney Sun-Telegraph).

Aftermath of a deadly I-80 accident Sunday near Potter. (Courtesy: Sidney Sun-Telegraph).

Cheyenne County Attorney Paul Schaub says a Maryland family riding in separate cars were killed Sunday in the second accident near the Potter interchange on I-80,

The driver of the 2010 Ford Mustang hit by the semi driven by manslaughter suspect Josef Slezak was Christopher Schmidt, 30, Gaithersburg, MD.

Schmidt was killed along with his wife and two children, who were in the Toyota Corolla in front of him that was pushed underneath a semi in the fiery crash. They are 28 year old Diana Schmidt, two year old Connor Schmidt and 3 year old Samuel Schmidt.

Authorities say Diana Schmidt was 30 weeks pregnant.

The 36 year old Slezak, from Rivergrove, Illinois, has been charged with multiple counts of manslaughter and motor vehicle homicide stemming from the deaths of the Schmidt family.

The accident occurred when traffic backed up on the interstate for several miles following the fatal collision of two semis in the westbound lanes around 4:20 a.m. near the Potter interchange.

Authorities say Slezak never slowed down and did not have his CB on where warnings were being issued by truckers about the stalled traffic ahead.

27 year old Keith Johnson of Big Lake, Minnesota, was killed in the first accident.

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