Girl, 11, killed in DWI accident

October 11, 2009 8:31:37 PM PDT
A little girl is dead and a woman under arrest, accused of driving drunk. Eleven-year-old Leandra Rosado was one of seven kids in the car when it crashed on the Henry Hudson Parkway early Sunday. "Out of eight girls, my daughter, what's the reason for this?" a distraught Lenny Rosado said.

The grieving father faces the inexplicable as so many unanswered questions swirl around the catastrophic crash.

"She was my best friend, companion, partner in crime," Lenny said.

She, along with six other girls, was riding inside the car, driven by 31-year-old Carmen Huertas. Police say she was drunk while traveling north. Huertas' 11-year-old daughter, Brittney, was also in the vehicle, headed to Huertas' Bronx apartment for a sleep over.

But for some reason, the car sharply veered off the road near 96th Street, slammed into a tree and flipped.

Some of the girls were ejected. Leandra was killed.

Huertas, who is now charged with driving while intoxicated and vehicular manslaughter, was injured. Hers sister, Yolanda Velez, spoke to her in the hospital.

"She doesn't remember, doesn't recall anything," Velez said. "She doesn't recall absolutely anything."

Authorities say Huertas went to a party on West 20th Street around 8 p.m. She reportedly stayed there for a few hours, then left in her car with all of the kids.

"There were adults there," Lenny said. "Why didn't one single adult see this young lady drinking and say hold up, you can't take those kids?"

But Huertas' relatives insist something other than alcohol caused the accident.

"The only time my sister would drink was when she was in her home with her husband," Velez said. "That's it. Not to the point where she would get so drunk and not know what was happening. It was one or two drinks."

But for now, all Lenny can focus on are the last words he said to his only child Saturday.

"'Be careful, I'll see you tomorrow,'" he said. "She gave me a big hug and said I love you."

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