AP NEWS

3 Georgia teens killed in crash leaving high school football game

October 28, 2017

Three Georgia teenagers are dead and one is in critical condition after a single-vehicle crash Friday night near Meadowcreek High School in Norcross.

Gwinnett County police said a Toyota 4 Runner driven by 18-year-old Brandon Martinez was traveling south on Steve Reynolds Boulevard when the accident occurred. The teens were leaving a football game at the school.

Martinez was killed in the crash along with passengers Nelson Umanzor, 18, and Naseer Alwakeel, 16. The fourth passenger in the vehicle, 17-year-old Mesiah Allen, remains in critical condition at Gwinnett Medical Center in Lawrenceville, police said.

Gwinnett County Public Schools spokeswoman Sloan Roach said the students, three seniors and a junior, were very involved at the school, and offered prayers to the students’ families and the Meadowcreek community.

“We know the loss of three of these young, promising lives will be difficult for students and staff, alike,” Roach said. “The school will have its counselors and emergency response teams at the school on Monday to assist those who need help coping with this loss.”

Accident investigators remained on the scene early Saturday morning to determine the cause and circumstances surrounding the accident, Gwinnett police spokesman Jacob Albright said.

Police said Martinez was driving in the left lane, police said, when it approached a slower vehicle.

“Based on witness accounts and evidence collected on scene, it was determined that Martinez swerved to the right to avoid a collision, and lost control of the vehicle,” Albright said. “The Toyota 4 Runner veered to the right and went airborne after striking a guardrail, then colliding with a tree.”

Speed is being investigated as a contributing factor, Albright said.

The accident occurred about a half-mile from the high school in the 4400 block of Steve Reynolds Boulevard at around 10:15 p.m., police said.

“When officers arrived they located a black SUV that sustained extensive damage, off of the roadway and down an embankment,” Albright said.

Albright said responding officers located the four occupants in the vehicle, three of which were determined to be deceased on the scene from unknown injuries.