A 37-year-old woman is charged with manslaughter in a vehicleFive people, including a pregnant woman and a child, were killed in Los Angeles on Thursday afternoon.
California Highway Patrol said Friday that Nicole Lorraine Linton was behind the wheel of a Mercedes-Benz sedan when it ran a red light and collided with several vehicles in Windsor Hills, a neighborhood southeast of downtown LA.
Linton remains hospitalized with moderate injuries and has been arrested on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence, CHP said. Her case is being forwarded to the LA County District Attorney’s Office.
“Our office is in close contact with the lead law enforcement agency investigating,” the prosecutor’s office said in a statement. “A prosecutor has already been appointed and will be working with the police throughout the weekend. We will provide updates as more information becomes available. The case could be referred to us as early as Monday.”
The violent crash was captured on security video. Several people were ejected from the vehicle and two vehicles went up in flames, CHP said.
The car was traveling at least 80 km/h as it hurtled through the busy intersection, CHP agent Franco Pepi said.
The coroner’s office on Friday identified one of the deceased victims as Asherey Ryan, a 23-year-old pregnant woman. Her unborn child was listed as “baby boy Ryan” in the online coroner’s records. Two other women and a man, as well as a boy, were killed, but their names were not made public.
Pepi said eight others were injured, including Linton. The other victims had minor injuries, including a 33-year-old woman and six children, ages 13 months to 15 years old, Pepi said.
CHP said Friday that “due to extensive fire damage, it is unknown at this time what make and model the affected vehicles are and what vehicle the affected parties were in.”
A memorial grew outside the intersection on Friday, as mourners left flowers and candles in memory of the dead.
Henry Sanchez, who works at nearby Sinclair Gas, was at the cash register when he heard “the loudest noise I’ve ever heard.”
“The sound of it, it was heartbreaking,” he told The Associated Press on Friday. “It was like two trains hitting each other, metal on metal.”
He saw people running to the cars to help, but they were held back by the flames until firefighters arrived.
“I remember everyone trying to put out the fire and help people as much as possible, but nobody could do anything,” he said.
Another witness to the crash, Veronica Esquivel, told KTLA-TV that a baby was thrown from the vehicle and landed next to her.
“All of a sudden a baby literally flew from the center of the intersection to the center of the gas station and landed right in front of me on the ground,” Esquival said. “One of the workers came and saw me with the baby and took the baby out of my hands. … Someone tried to resuscitate the baby, but the baby was gone.”
Debra Jackson told CBS Los Angeles that she was about to get out of her car to accelerate when she heard a large explosion.
“The flames just went over everyone,” Jackson said. “The flames went all over my car and they told me to jump out of my car … because I was trying to get out of my car, to go to the gas station. And I jumped out of my car and just left my car is standing there .”