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Apr 9, 2021

Siblings Mowed Down by Alleged Drunk Driver; Girl Dies, Brother Hospitalized

Keiana Cruz

A Santa Familia family is grieving the loss of their only daughter. The eleven-year-old girl and her little brother were mowed down by an alleged drunk driver behind the wheels of a truck. It happened just a stone’s throw away from the children’s home. Reporter Andrea Polanco travelled west today and has the following story.


Luis Cruz, Father of Deceased

“She was my queen. She was the only daughter I mi have. I had four boys and one girl. She was the only one. My pretty daughter.”


Andrea Polanco, Reporting

Overcome with grief from the loss of his only daughter, Luis Cruz broke down today as he remembers his eleven-year-old daughter Keiana Cruz who was knocked down and killed. That same accident has also left his five-year-old son Jahir Cruz in the hospital.


Jahir Cruz

Luis Cruz

“She mi love to go dah school; do work and she was smart. She was in Standard Five already. She used to love to cook and help her mom. She was learning a lot in the kitchen. But now I lose her (crying).”


The children were walking along this road just before four-thirty on Thursday evening as they headed back home from spending the day with their aunt when a villager who was driving this white truck ran them over in front of this house. The little girl was dragged and the impact flung her little brother to the side of the road. It happened near the village police station and just around the corner from the siblings’ home. Cruz was at his work in Spanish Lookout when he got the dreadful call minutes after it happened.


Luis Cruz

“My sister told me that it was my two kids – my daughter and son – were coming home when a car crashed into them. They say that he was discussing with his wife and then say that he was kinda drunk. They say that he started the car and he gone speed and crash straight into them; into my daughter and into my son.”


Andrea Polanco

“And when he hit them he didn’t stop the first time?”


Luis Cruz

Luis Cruz

“He didn’t stop. He was still running and my daughter was under the car.”


Andrea Polanco

“So, the car was dragging your little girl?”


Luis Cruz

“Yes he dragged her about forty feet from where he knocked her down.”


Andrea Polanco

“And your little boy – what is his condition at this time?”


Luis Cruz

“He is in Belize City right now critical condition because he received surgery in his upper jaw and his left foot is broken.”


Saudy Joseph Landero

The report in the village is that the man behind the wheel was allegedly intoxicated. The family has learned that he fled the scene and was later recaptured by police. This afternoon that man, Saudy Joseph Landero of Santa Familia, was hit with multiple charges including causing manslaughter by negligence and failure to provide a specimen. But, for this grieving family, that charge doesn’t bring much comfort when they are now preparing to bury Keiana. For Luis Cruz, she was a bright light in their lives that was put out too soon. He cautions drunk drivers to think before they get behind the wheel.


Luis Cruz

“I just want to tell those people out there if they are drinking let them don’t drive. If they want to drink, don’t drive because lot of times these things happen already.   You see now what happened to my kids? They get knocked down because of what? It’s because of drunken man and driving.”


Reporting for News Five, I’m Andrea Polanco.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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