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Oct 19, 2022

Preschooler Dies in Traffic Accident on His Way to School

Zaiden Villanueva

A thirty-six-year-old Georgeville mother was held in police custody overnight, following a deadly road traffic accident out west. According to police, Erika Trapp was driving her two daughters and two of the neighbor’s children to school when she ran off the George Price Highway and crashed into a roadside drain. The accident claimed the life of four-year-old Zaiden Villanueva, who was reportedly sitting in the front seat of the vehicle at the time. Reports are that the remaining passengers have been treated and released from the hospital. And while police investigate this horrific incident, Villanueva’s mother is left to mourn the loss of her preschooler. News Five’s Paul Lopez reports.


Paul Lopez, Reporting

A candle has been placed at the location where four-year-old Zaiden Villanueva lost his life in a traffic accident on Tuesday morning. The infant was on his way to school inside this white Ford Expedition when the driver, thirty-six-year-old Erika Trapp, lost control of the vehicle and ran off the road. Trapp was also travelling with three other children in the vehicle, including two of her daughters and Zaiden’s six-year-old brother. The mother of the deceased child told us that Trapp is their neighbor and that she was doing the family a favor by transporting her children to school.


Joycelyn Mangar

Joycelyn Mangar, Mother of Deceased

“I mih the home and dah my husband come ask fih the kids and I tell ah deh gawn dah school with the neighbor, because she have kids weh guh dah the school. And, she dah my baby godmother. The baby weh pass away, she dah my baby godmother. So when my husband reach he ask me weh part the babies. I tell ah deh gawn with Erika, she gawn drop deh. He seh but Erika vehicle the out deh eena wah drain.”


Zaiden was reportedly in the front seat of the SUV. The distance from the mother’s home to the primary school is approximately a quarter of a mile. The deadly accident occurred less than a minute away from Zaiden’s school. When Mangar received news that Trapp’s SUV had crashed inside a drain, she rushed to the location to inquire.


Joycelyn Mangar

“When we reach deh from we sih the vehicle, I start to tremble. I start to cry, because I know somebody get hurt badly. So, my older son jump out and I tell ah sih if the baby deh the een deh, because my six year old mih the een deh to. Ih she mah nobody the een deh, so we gawn dah hospital. When I reach I gawn eena the emergency room and I sih the lady weh mih the drive, her two kids and my six-year-old the sit down, but no signs of Zaden. But, before I gawn eena the next part of the emergency room I hear a lady she, weh the baby mah weh dead.”


David McDougal’s home is situated near the scene of the accident. Upon hearing the loud crash, the village chairman rushed out to render assistance to Trapp and the children.  Here is what he told us.


David McDougal

David McDougal, Chairman, Georgeville Village Council

“I was inside my house when I heard a bang. Shortly after I ran out and I saw a white vehicle in the ditch. I ran towards there and then I saw this ranger from Mountain Pine Ridge I guess, and they came in a yellow jeep. They immediately take out the kids them from the jeep and put them on the side of the road. From there they put them inside the jeep and take them to the San Ignacio Hospital.  I only saw the kids bleeding, so I immediately reversed my vehicle there and see if I could give assistance but the yellow vehicle had already taken them to San Ignacio.”


Zaiden Villanueva

Joycelyn Mangar

“The dah mussy bout the third time she took them within a two weeks period, because most of the time ih pah ker deh or my daughter in law would walk ker deh. But it’s a good distance and deh nuh like walk.”


The chairman of the village sent his condolences to Mangar. But today, this grieving mother was inconsolable, as she tries to figure out what led to the accident that claimed the life of her child. Zaiden celebrated his fourth birthday two months ago, on August the nineteenth.


Joycelyn Mangar

“I can’t see. I want know how, because the road nuh have nothing weh I run off the road. The vehicle like the way ih look, cause I don’t know nothing I nuh know weh happen. But, dah like ih just fly off completely off the road eena the drain. I nuh know weh happen.  So, maybe sometime down the road she wah she weh happen, casue I don’t know. I nuh want question my six-year-old. He just reach from the hospital and he the ask weh ih bredda deh. I nuh know weh fih tell ah. I nuh know. I nuh know why but I feel like I had to do all I mih could and what he ask fah I mek sure he get it. I mek sure he mih get it and he neva want share none ah his cupcake. He seh, mommy nuh give nobody none, all ah deh dah fih me.”


Reporting for News Five, I am Paul Lopez.

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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