Woman charged with child abuse, manslaughter after crash kills toddler, teen in St. Pete

An 18-month-old and a 16-year-old were killed in a crash near Tyrone Square Boulevard and Norfolk Street in St. Petersburg Friday, according to police.

The St. Petersburg Police Department says an 18-year-old woman has now been charged with manslaughter and child abuse.

Investigators say the driver of a 2017 Nissan Rogue tried to pass another car on Tyrone Square Blvd., but lost control and crashed into a tree.


In total, two adults, two children, and two toddlers were inside the vehicle. Both toddlers and one of the juveniles were taken to the hospital, where two of them died: 18-month-old Williah Waller and 16-year-old Mar'rion Heatley.

18-year-old Maliyah Waters was treated at the scene. She was listed as a caregiver to at least one of the children in the vehicle. She was later arrested and charged with aggravated manslaughter of a child and child abuse/aggravated battery with great bodily harm.

st pete crash tyrone children involved (1)

According to arrest documents, none of the rear seat safety belts were buckled at the time of the crash.

The crash happened shortly before 1 p.m., closing the roadway for several hours. One officer was seen walking away from the crash scene, holding a child's car seat.

Anyone with information about this crash is asked to call the SPPD non-emergency line at 727-893-7780. 

A previous version of this story stated Maliyah Waters was the driver of the vehicle. St. Petersburg police say clarified that she was not the driver.

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