Los Angeles County Fire Department firefighters were called just before 1:40 p.m. on Aug. 4 to La Brea and Slauson avenues, near Ladera Park, on what was initially reported as a fire. When crews arrived on scene, they discovered that eight vehicles had collided in the intersection after a Mercedes-Benz was seen speeding southbound on La Brea Avenue.
Several vehicles involved in the crash erupted into flames and caused a nearby commercial fire. Bystanders tried to help those trapped but couldn't get close because of the flames.
The pregnant woman killed in the crash was identified Friday by the Los Angeles County coroner's office as Asherey Ryan, 23, of Los Angeles. Her unborn child, listed by the coroner's office as "baby boy Ryan," was also counted among the deceased. Family members told FOX 11 that Ryan's infant son, Alonzo, was also killed.
A GoFundMe has been set up on behalf of Asherey and her kids.
Asherey Ryan and her unborn child were killed in a fiery crash in Windsor Hills that left six people dead. Her infant son, Alonzo, was also killed. (Photos provided by family) (FOX 11)
Also among those killed were two additional adult females and an adult male. Authorities identified one of the victims on Tuesday as 23-year-old Reynold Lester. The other two victims were identified by friends and families attending an Aug. 10 memorial as Nathesia Lewis and Lynette Noble. Lewis and Noble were two best friends sitting inside one of the cars involved in the wreck, loved ones tell FOX 11.
An additional eight people were injured in the crash, including six minors and two adults, ranging in age from one to 33 years old. All the surviving victims were taken to the hospital and are expected to survive, according to the Los Angeles County Fire Department.
Video from the scene showed the suspect driving a Mercedes-Benz at a high rate of speed, running a red light at the intersection and crashing directly into a dark-colored sedan, which in turn struck several other vehicles. The Mercedes-Benz and two other vehicles burst into flames following the collision, and the wreck came to a stop at the southwest corner of the intersection after striking a gas station sign.
The CHP reported a sixth victim was later found dead in the burned wreckage of one vehicle. At least eight other people, mostly children and teenagers, were injured in the collision. All eight patients were transported to the UCLA Medical Center. Seven patients were released after being triaged in the emergency department Thursday night and one patient was admitted in fair condition.
The Mercedes-Benz was driven by 37-year-old Nicole Linton, who was also treated at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center for major injuries. She was arrested on Friday morning, the CHP said.
The CHP has announced it intends to recommend the District Attorney file charges against her.
The intersection of La Brea and Slauson avenues reopened around 3:30 a.m. Friday.
Linton is a traveling nurse at Kaiser Permanente's West Los Angeles Medical Center. Following this week's tragedy, Kaiser Permanente issued a statement:
"Everyone at Kaiser Permanente is deeply saddened by Thursday’s horrific crash. It’s impossible to imagine the pain those involved are experiencing. Our thoughts are with everyone affected by this tragedy. At this time, we are not able to comment on what has been reported as a criminal investigation. Any further questions about should be forwarded to law enforcement authorities."
On Friday, Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascón issued the following statement:
"My heart goes out to the families that lost loved ones in the horrific car collision that occurred yesterday in Windsor Hills. This incredible tragedy has sent shockwaves throughout Los Angeles and the loss of so many precious lives will have a lasting impact on those that are closest to them.
Our office is in close contact with the lead law enforcement agency investigating. A prosecutor has already been assigned and will be working with law enforcement throughout the weekend. We will provide updates as more information becomes available. The case could be presented to us as early as Monday."
CNS contributed to this report.