Wreck kills 12-year-old boy

Car driven by his 17-year-old sister crashes into beer truck

PORT CHARLOTTE -- One sneaker inside a blue Chrysler New Yorker was about the only thing recognizable late Friday afternoon after a wreck at the intersection of Quesada Avenue and Toledo Blade Boulevard killed a 12-year-old Port Charlotte boy and injured his 17-year-old sister.

The 17-year-old driver, Kristin Joy Dean, and her younger brother, Jacob Dean, of 23111 Roundtree Drive, Port Charlotte, were leaving Kmart in Murdock and trying to cross Toledo Blade around 4 p.m. Kristin stopped at the stop sign, on the service road behind Kmart, and continued across Toledo Blade onto Quesada Avenue -- and into the path of a Miller Lite beer truck.

The truck driver, 39-year-old Leonard Nolan of Cape Coral, was traveling north on Toledo Blade from U.S. 41 toward Veterans Boulevard when the car darted in front of him. He didn't have a chance to stop, said Florida Highway Patrol Trooper Michael Michaud.

The truck slammed into the passenger side of the 1988 Chrysler, where Jacob was sitting.

The two vehicles came to a final rest at the corner of the intersection, outside Heritage Oak Park, with the car partially beneath the front driver's side of the truck. The truck's impact on the car caused "hellacious intrusion" to the 12-year-old's side of the car, said Charlotte County Fire & EMS spokeswoman Dee Hawkins.

The truck driver was uninjured. Kristin suffered chest trauma and was taken to Bon Secours-St. Joseph Hospital, Hawkins said, but an FHP report released late Friday night listed her injuries as "minor."

Bayflite had been called in to fly Jacob to a trauma center, but the helicopter was not needed.

The boy had been trapped in the car for about 30 minutes and suffered "life-threatening injuries," Hawkins said. Charlotte County sheriff's deputies held white sheets to prevent onlookers from seeing Jacob, as firefighters extricated him from the vehicle and quickly loaded him into an ambulance.

Jacob was in extremely critical condition when he was taken to Fawcett Memorial Hospital. He never recovered and died shortly after 5 p.m.

Both siblings were wearing their seat belts, and no alcohol or substance abuse was suspected in the crash.

The truck driver was not cited and not at fault in the wreck and was "shook up" and "upset," Michaud said.

Kristin violated the truck's right of way, Michaud said. Charges are pending an investigation.

Troopers have been trying to get a traffic light installed at that intersection and believe if one had been in place, there's a "good possibility" the wreck may have been prevented, Michaud said.

You can e-mail Christy Arnold at [email protected]


Staff Writer

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