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Black boxes analyzed in crash that killed 2 kids

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Posted: Jul 9, 2014 4:21 PM by Chris Nakamoto
Updated: Jul 9, 2014 6:26 PM
Source: WBRZ

  Rating: 0.0 (0 votes)

Topics: Sarye Lanus, David Lanus Jr., Killed, Bluff Road, Prairieville, Crash, Shawnette Taylor, State Police, Investigation WBRZ

PRAIRIEVILLE - Tonight, there are questions from many of you about why a woman who crashed into five people and killed two children hasn't been charged in the wreck.

The crash killed 6-year-old David Lanus Jr. and 9-year-old Sarye Lanus.

Shileta McMeller lives across the street from the family. Her daughter was best friends with Sarye Lanus.

"I think justice should be served," McMeller said. "There are a lot of questions as to why the driver hasn't been charged with anything at the moment."

Over the past two weeks, WBRZ has been flooded with phone calls and emails about this very issue. Today, we took those concerns to State Police.

"I know people have questions and want to know why the woman hasn't been charged in the death of these two children yet," Trooper Jared Sandifer said. "But, people need to understand it's an active case and an active investigation. Our troopers are doing what they are trained to do."

Currently, State Police said they are trying to see if 47-year-old Shawnette Taylor was distracted at the time. They are currently reviewing cell phone records to see if she was texting or on the phone at the time of the wreck. State Police are also looking at the car's black boxes, which will tell investigators how fast she was going, whether she applied the brakes before the crash and whether she was wearing a seatbelt.

"They are going to determine exactly what happened in that crash," Sandifer said. "We owe it not just to the families of those killed, but to the driver of that vehicle as well."

Last weekend, family members laid the children to rest.

"We are a very, very, very, very close family, and it's a tremendous loss. We're going to have a hard time without them but we're going to get through it," David Lanus and his wife Shayla said.

Tonight, the victim's mother is also wondering why the woman who caused the crash has not been charged.

State troopers said toxicology tests are pending, but they don't believe Taylor was impaired. There's no time frame on when the toxicology tests will be finished or when the investigation will be complete.

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