An alleged Miami-area wrong-way driver reportedly tweeted “2 Drunk 2 Care” a few hours before a car crash that killed two young women early Saturday morning.
The Florida Highway Patrol indicated that the motorist, who reportedly was traveling eastbound in the westbound lane in her Hyundai Sonata, crashed head-on into a Toyota Camry and killed the Camry’s passenger and seriously injured the driver. Marisa Catronio, 21, was pronounced dead at the scene, while her best friend Kaitlyn Ferrante, also 21, subsequently died at a local hospital. According to CBS Miami, Ferrante “suffered from severe head injuries after the accident and was kept on life support while in the hospital. Thursday morning she was pronounced dead.”
Catronio’s dad tracked her whereabouts with a smartphone app when she didn’t get home by an agreed-upon 2 am curfew. “Using an app that tracked his daughter’s cellphone, [Gary] Catronio said that at 2:11 a.m. he could tell that his daughter’s car was stopped on the expressway. He and other family members arrived on the scene to find police and the tragic result.”
NBC Miami identified the alleged wrong-way driver on the Sawgrass Expressway as Kayla Mendoza, 20, who was also hospitalized in serious condition.
According to the Miami New Times blog, “Mendoza, of Hallandale Beach, who calls herself ‘pothead princess’ on Twitter and has slightly altered the spelling of her name on the social media site, has dispatched scores of tweets detailing what appears to be chronic marijuana and alcohol abuse — some of which even occurs inside her car.”
Marisa’s family wants to launch an effort to prevent devastating tragedies of this nature: “A vigil attended by more than 100 people was held in Coral Gables [Wednesday] night for victim Marisa Catronio, whose family now plans to create what they call ‘Project Marisa,’ an effort to install safety features to deter wrong-way drivers and warn others of their presence on the road.” These features could include access ramps containing spikes or flashing warning lights.
The incident is under investigation, and no charges have yet been filed pending a toxicology report.
2 drunk 2 care
— Kaila Mendoza (@highimkaila) November 17, 2013
Image Credit: Chris Jordan