Driver charged in accident that killed 11-year-old

Driver charged in accident that killed 11-year-old

November 14th, 2011 by Staff Report in Local - Breaking News

Chattanooga police have arrested a man involved in a fatal accident on Rossville Boulevard.

Stephen McDowell, 40, was arrested this morning after a grand jury heard a presentment of evidence and returned indictments against him for vehicular homicide, two counts of reckless aggravated assault and reckless endangerment, said police spokeswoman Sgt. Jerri Weary.

The charges stem from a car crash Sept. 19 of this year, when Rosalia Velasquez, 38, was attempting to turn her car across two southbound lanes into the Family Dollar Store parking lot at 3400 Rossville Blvd. when McDowell's car struck her car.

Velasquez's two children - the 11-year-old and her 6-year-old brother - were not wearing seatbelts and were thrown from the vehicle, Weary said.

The girl died of her injuries a few days after the accident, said Weary.

McDowell's charges stem from evidence obtained from the scene, along with scientific information obtained throughout the investigation, Weary said.

Velasquez was also cited for failure to properly restrain her children.