Man bought booze with fake ID in crash that killed 3 from NJ, cops say
WARSAW, NEW YORK — The man police say drunkenly crashed into a family of nine from New Jersey — resulting in the deaths of two adults and a 4-year-old girl — had been drinking with alcohol he purchased a fake ID the night prior, police now say.
The Wyoming County Sheriff's has said nine people were jammed into a Kia Sedona build for seven, including four children, and there were no child seats or booster seats being used. It also said at least some of those in the vehicle weren't wearing seat belts, and six to seven of the occupants had been ejected from the Sedona.
But it stressed in a new news release Friday there is no indication of anyone other than Richard Sawicki, 20, of Lackawanna, New York committed crimes that led to the crash.
Ondina Castro De La Cruz, 47, Mayelin Brito-Castro, 32, and Kiara Hernandez-Brito, 4— three generations of one family from Perth Amboy — died in or shortly after the crash. (The sheriff's office
Two more adults have been discharged from hospitals with a variety of injuries, as have a 14-year-old, a 10-year-old and one 4-year-old. Another 4-year-old remains in critical condition and in intensive care with a head injury, the sheriff's office said.
Authorities say they believe the family was en route to Niagara Falls when the crash happened on May 26 at 6:32 a.m., on Route 20A at Maxon Road. They say Sawicki's southbound Dodge Ram 2500 pickup truck went through an intersection without stopping at a stop sign, and struck the Sedona in a “T-Bone”-type collision.
"Our investigation has lead us to believe Sawicki was coming from a local bonfire-type party from the night before and was on his way to a local convenient store in Sheldon and then home," the sheriff's office said Friday. "The homeowners and persons at the party have greatly cooperated and contributed to this investigation. We have obtained evidence Sawicki purchased his alcohol with an out of state fake ID at a convenient store in Attica the night before the accident."
Sawicki's father is a police officer with the Lackawanna police department who has been "cooperative and professional with our personnel and at no time interfered with any aspect of this investigation," the sheriff's office said.
It expected the investigation to take days or weeks, during which blood evidence collected form Sawicki would be tested. Additional charges against him are "expected," the sheriff's office said.
"I can tell you this incident has struck a chord in our entire office and particularly to those who took the call, responded to the scene and have subsequently investigated these horrible events," the sheriff's office said.
Funds to support the victims' family are being raised though a GoFundMe published this week.
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