LAWRENCE, MASS. (WHDH) – A 23-year-old man who sped away from a traffic stop was arraigned Monday in his hospital bed on charges in connection with a head-on collision that claimed the life of a young girl and seriously injured four of her family members in Lawrence Saturday evening.
Selvin Manuel Lima, of Lawrence, pleaded not guilty at Brigham & Women’s Hospital to charges including manslaughter, motor vehicle homicide by reckless operation, four counts of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon causing serious bodily injury, operating with a suspended license, and failure to stop for a police officer, according to the Essex District Attorney’s Office.
A tearful Lima was ordered held without bail as he laid handcuffed to the bed.
Family members identified the crash victim as 11-year-old Taysha Rohena Silva, of Peabody.
Silva’s grief-stricken godmother told 7NEWS that the child’s death has been “hard” to cope with.
Silva was taken to Lawrence General Hospital, where she was later pronounced dead, the DA’s Office said.
The four other occupants — Silva’s 29-year-old mother, her mother’s 27-year-old boyfriend, her 8-year-old sister, and her 15-year-old cousin — were transported to various Boston hospitals with serious injuries.
Prosecutors say when officers approached Lima’s car at a traffic stop, he sped away, lost control as he turned onto Winthrop Avenue, and crossed into the southbound travel lane, striking a black 2016 Honda Civic head-on.
Surveillance video captured witnesses rushing to help the five people inside the Honda.
One good Samaritan said he “dragged the lady out and laid her on the ground.”
He recalled her saying, “My kids, my kids!”
Residents made a memorial consisting of candles, flowers and other items at the scene of the crash.
“It’s just sad,” one man said. “It’s just something that should not have happened that happened.”
An investigation is ongoing.
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