WINDSOR HILLS, California (KABC) — A somber vigil was held Friday night in honor of the victims of a multi-vehicle accident in Windsor Hills that killed six people, including a pregnant woman who died along with her young son.
Asherey Ryan was on his way to a prenatal doctor’s appointment at the time of Thursday’s fiery collision, her sister Seana Kerr told ABC7. Ryan’s 11-month-old son Alonzo Quintero and her boyfriend, Reynold Lester, were also among the deceased.
“Everyone is devastated,” Kerr said in an interview. “She literally walked out the door, because we all live together, and she said, ‘Okay, I love you. I’m going to my doctor’s appointment to check on the baby.’ We asked, “Oh, why don’t you leave our cousin here?” She said, “No, I want to go for a ride with my son.” So when we knew that, our hearts really broke.”
Lester’s family told ABC7 that the 24-year-old guard was the father of the unborn child, who was listed in the online coroner’s records as “baby boy Ryan.”
Two other women and a man were also killed, but their names were not made public on Friday.
Shortly after 1:30 p.m. Thursday, a Mercedes-Benz coupe ran a red light at high speed, causing the accident involving as many as six cars near a gas station at the intersection of Slauson and La Brea avenues, according to the California Highway Patrol.
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The California Highway Patrol said Nicole Lorraine Linton, 37, who was injured in the collision, was taken into custody at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center in Westwood on suspicion of manslaughter by a vehicle with gross negligence.
Prosecutors said they could receive the case next Monday and then decide whether to file criminal charges.
“I drove to the crime scene,” Kerr said. “I ran past the police officers just because I wanted to feel her energy again. Yesterday I really lost it. Yesterday my family was broken and we are still broken.”
Alonzo would have turned one year old on August 17, his family said.
Meanwhile, Ryan’s mother said relatives have set up a GoFundMe to help with funeral expenses.
Ryan was a stay at home mom and college student, according to her family.
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The Mercedes-Benz coupe never seemed to brake as it flew through the intersection and CHP officer Franco Pepi said detectives are investigating whether Linton had a medical episode or was driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Several people were thrown from the cars and two vehicles caught fire. News video of the scene showed the charred and mangled cars, as well as a children’s car seat among the rubble that covered the street.
Surveillance video showed the Mercedes hurtling through an intersection and hitting at least two cars that exploded in flames and sped onto a sidewalk and hit the sign at the corner of the gas station. A fiery streak led to one car. A vehicle was torn in two.
The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office released the following statement Friday afternoon:
“My heart goes out to the families who lost loved ones in the horrific car collision that occurred yesterday in Windsor Hills. This incredible tragedy has sent shockwaves throughout Los Angeles and the loss of so many precious lives will have a lasting impact on those who closest to them.Our office is in close contact with the lead law enforcement agency investigating. A prosecutor has already been appointed and will work with the police throughout the weekend. We will provide updates as more information becomes available. The matter could be brought before us as early as Monday.”
The The Singapore Time contributed to this report.
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