PINELLAS COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) – A toddler and teenager have died after police say the car they were in got into a serious crash in St. Petersburg.
According to the St. Petersburg Police Department, 18-year-old Maliyah Waters was in a grey Nissan Rogue northbound on Tyrone Boulevard on Friday tried to overtake another vehicle, lost control and struck a tree.
Police say two adults, two juveniles, and two toddlers were in the car at the time of the crash.
“We cannot emphasize enough the importance of wearing seatbelts and of properly restraining children,” said SPPD public information officer, Sandra Bentil. “It’s devastating anytime people are hurt in a crash, and especially to lose two children in a crash is a tragedy.”
Bentil says the two victims are identified as 18-month-old Williah Waller and 16-year-old Mar’rion Heatley.
According to Bentil, the other toddler remains in the hospital in critical but stable condition.
It is currently unclear the relationship between the six passengers in the car as well as if speed was a factor in the crash.
Waters was treated at the scene. She has been charged with aggravated manslaughter of a child and child abuse/ aggravated battery with great bodily harm because she allowed children in her care to ride
in a vehicle improperly restrained.
According to police, Waters was not the driver of the vehicle.
Tyrone Boulevard was closed for several hours from 9th Avenue N. and 22nd Avenue N. as police investigated.
Police say the investigation is ongoing.