CRIME

5 family members on 'dream trip' to Disney killed in crash; teen driver may have fallen asleep

This photo provided by the Louisiana State Police shows the wreckage of a sport utility vehicle that was involved in an accident that killed five people in Calhoun, La., Thursday, Nov. 20, 2014. A 16-year-old boy driving relatives from Texas to a vacation in Disney World apparently fell asleep at the wheel, causing the vehicle to veer off the highway and roll over, killing three children and two adults, authorities said Thursday. (AP Photo/Louisiana State Police)

This photo provided by the Louisiana State Police shows the wreckage of a sport utility vehicle that was involved in an accident that killed five people in Calhoun, La., Thursday, Nov. 20, 2014. A 16-year-old boy driving relatives from Texas to a vacation in Disney World apparently fell asleep at the wheel, causing the vehicle to veer off the highway and roll over, killing three children and two adults, authorities said Thursday. (AP Photo/Louisiana State Police)  (The Associated Press)

Michael and Trudi Hardman had always talked about taking their six children to Disney World, and just a week before Thanksgiving, it seemed their "dream trip" was to be a reality.

But just a little more than three hours after they took to the road Wednesday night, their SUV veered off a highway and rolled over in Louisiana, killing the couple and three of the kids. Michael Hardman's brother Timothy Hardman said the driver and two passengers were injured, one critically.

Police believe the couple's 16-year-old son apparently fell asleep behind the wheel of the SUV during the drive from Terrell, Texas, to Orlando, Florida.

State police spokesman Michael Reichardt says the driver was cited with careless operation, which is a misdemeanor.

Timothy Hardman says going to Disney World was his brother's family's "dream trip."

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Previous versions of this story erroneously reported the charge against the driver. The driver was cited with careless operation, a misdemeanor, not reckless operation of a vehicle, which is a felony.