Identical twins accused of swapping places after one accused of killing two Amish children in crash

Court documents state that the sisters allegedly pulled off the switch because Samantha Petersen was high on drugs at the time of the crash

Martha McHardy
Thursday 07 March 2024 17:23 GMT
Identical twins accused of swapping places charged with killing 2 Amish children after car rear-ends carriage

Identical twins from Minnesota are accused of swapping places after one of them, who was allegedly driving while high, crashed into an Amish horse-drawn carriage and killed two children.

Prosecutors allege that Samantha Jo Petersen was behind the wheel on 25 September 2023 when Wilma Miller, seven, and Imra Miller, 11 were killed, while two of their siblings aged nine and 13 were rushed to hospital with injuries.

Police said the car Ms Petersen was allegedly driving rear-ended a horse-drawn carriage the siblings were riding in, killing two of them.

At the scene, Samantha’s twin sister, Sarah Beth Petersen, said she was the one behind the wheel, but police said they now believe that not to be the case.

Sheriff John DeGeorge told local media that a “lengthy investigation” found “inconsistencies” in the twins’ stories, and what they were saying was starting not to add up. Dozens of charges were then filed against the twins, he added.

Speaking on TV, Sheriff DeGeorge said: “Sarah was on scene a short time before our first deputy arrived. That allowed them to come up with this story where Sarah would take responsibility for the crash and start to mislead the investigation from that very point.”

Court documents state that the sisters, both of whom were at the scene of the crash, allegedly pulled off the switch because Samantha Petersen was high on drugs at the time and was scared she would be sent to prison.

Samantha’s driving licence had also expired and she had no insurance for her silver Toyota 4Runner when the crash happened, according to court documents obtained by Fox News Digital.

Two Minnesota Amish children were killed in the crash (Fox 9)

The documents added that Sarah had recently been in prison and may have felt she owed her sister a favour for taking care of her kids while she was locked up, according to Fox News Digital.

Officers on the scene allegedly found “a couple of burnt marijuana blunts” and a tin can of pot in the crashed vehicle.

Meanwhile, investigators later found evidence that Samantha was also using methamphetamine.

Court filings also detail how a police officer allegedly left his recorder running and walked away during the investigation.

It recorded Samantha Petersen telling her sister: “I think one of the guys is onto me, but I really don’t care … there’s no way they would ever know the difference between the two of us, so they can’t tell.”

Detectives also examined text messages sent by the sisters around the time of the crash, and found that Samantha Petersen told someone investigators have identified as “DH” that “i don’t think you realize that i did that…i hit that amish buggy and killed two people…made sarah come there and take the fall for it so i wouldn’t go to prison.”

She also allegedly searched: “What happens if you get in an accident with an Amish buggy and kill two people?” on her phone.

Samantha Petersen is now facing 21 counts, including vehicular homicide, DWI and leaving the scene of an accident. She is due in court on 25 March.

Sarah Petersen is due in court on 1 April on 16 felony charges, including aiding and abetting and trying to take responsibility for a crime.

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