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Raleigh police looking at 911 calls in fatal wreck

Posted July 14, 2008

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— Raleigh police had been searching for a man believed to be drunk when he allegedly collided with another car early Saturday morning, killing a Chapel Hill teenager, according to 911 calls released Monday.

Wake County 911 received a call at about 3:21 a.m. from a woman concerned  that Justin Caleb Crouse, 19, might have been drinking with friends before taking off in his car.

"There is a young gentleman who is very intoxicated about to drive from my neighborhood," the caller said. "I don't have the license plate number, but I can tell you it's a white Ford Fusion."

Less than two hours later, police said, Crouse was driving on Lynn Road near Glenwood Avenue when he lost control of his vehicle and struck another car.

Lillian "Lilli" Broox Manis, 17, and her boyfriend, Philip Iavorov Jurov, 17, of Durham, were taken to WakeMed, where Manis was pronounced dead. Jurov was listed in fair condition Monday.

Police are also looking into reports from other motorists who called 911 about someone driving erratically around the time of the wreck, including one call from four minutes before the wreck.

"It's driving down Lynn Road, doing about 90 mph and almost hit another car head-on and almost sideswiped two or three cars," the caller said. "They were headed toward Glenwood Avenue."

A third 911 call minutes later is from a cab driver reporting that she drove past the accident scene.

"There's one car overturned. And the other one – just – somebody took off, I don't know," the caller said. "There's a car that's overturned."

Crouse made his first appearance in Wake County District Court Monday on charges of felony death by motor vehicle, driving while impaired and provisional DWI. Blood alcohol test results were pending Monday afternoon.

Also in court were the victim's parents, who said they wanted to make sure their daughter is not forgotten.

"I want to make sure he realizes what he's done," Elizabeth Manis said.

Crouse was out of jail on $50,000 bond and had no comment as he left court Monday. But Elizabeth Manis did make contact with Crouse's father.

"I turned around to him and I said, 'He killed my daughter,'" she said. "And he said, 'I'm sorry.' But you know, 'sorry' doesn't cut it."

Lilli Manis was a 2008 graduate of Chapel Hill High School and planned to attend Earlham College in Indiana this fall, her parents said.

A memorial service is tentatively planned for 1 p.m. Saturday at the Chapel Hill Friends Meeting, 531 Raleigh Road, Chapel Hill.

118 Comments

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  • InJohnstonCo Jul 15, 2008

    How dare you criticize the victim's parents! There are any number of legitimate reasons for her and her boyfriend to be on the road at 5 am. Just this morning my 18 yo nephew and his 18 yo girlfriend were out driving at 5 am - they were on the way to Fort Bragg to greet my brother-in-law returning home from Iraq. Would it have been their parent's fault if they had been hit by a drunk punk?

  • Dr. Dataclerk Jul 15, 2008

    Stop speculating!

  • mfalesana Jul 15, 2008

    The people blaming the girls parent's are nuts.

    Who cares what rules you have. This is a free country and you should never have to worry about when you can or cannot drive. Speaking of a "dangerous hour" what about all the illegal immigrants that drive around drunk in the middle of the day and kill people on their way to and from work? I guess it's their faults as well because they should know better than to be out driving. Get a life.

    This kid needs his behind kicked as bad as nick hogan. Seems to me his parents weren't doing a good job teaching their kid how to behave. Stop placing the blame on the poor girls parents. that is just plain WRONG and disrespectful to do so. She did nothing wrong.

  • seankelly15 Jul 15, 2008

    lauraleigh - Didn't you read the comment just below yours? Get off your high horse and stop telling other people how to raise their children. As I said yesterday, the time of the accident had nothing to do with what caused the accident - he could have been drunk at any time during the day or night. And, the way he was driving would have led to a wreck - if not with this car, then with any number of other cars. If one of those cars were full of nuns and they were on their way to work in a hospital would you be less judgemental? No, probably not because you are silly enough to believe that 'nothing good happens after midnight' and whatever tragic things happen after midnight would be their own fault for being out after your acceptible hour.

  • SEOpro Jul 15, 2008

    There are plenty of times that chruch groups, civic groups, teen groups and the like leave on busses at 6:00 am to get to the destination, so depending on where you are - you may have to be up and traveling at 4-5 am to make the bus.

    Come ON folks......victims are victims. If you had a flat tire in the middle of the afternoon and was walking down the road to get help and a drunk ran over you - would you want people talking about how it was YOUR fault that you were walking on the side of the road in the grass, well off the pavement? Would you want your family to hear others speculating how THEY should have been there to pick you up and it was THEIR fault because you got run over?

    Leave the VICTIMS alone. They are hurt so much by this tragic event - the drunk is the sole cause of this danger and disaster.

  • Dr. Dataclerk Jul 15, 2008

    Oh yeah she was suppose to go out of state to college in August so what are her parents suppose to have gone with her and tucked her in.

    In this day and time, I would have to say yes. Its a lot of danger out there.

  • talkabout Jul 15, 2008

    greentara - AMEN!

  • Lissa13082 Jul 15, 2008

    jlh4jdj - Well said!

  • greentara Jul 15, 2008

    Yes, this is a tragic story and horribly a young girl was killed. But to say her Parents were not partially responsible is ridiculous. You do not get automatic redemption of Parental authority or supervision when you graduate high school. I still had to follow family rules WHILE at college... hey they were paying for it; it was the least I could do. She still was only 17 years old and too young to be driving around with another 17 year old at that dangerous hour. Dangerous, why? Because stupid drunks drive around then. How much experience do these young teens have at driving? Not much! Parents need to be more influential in there children's lives. Just letting them do whatever, doesn't cut it.

  • Dr. Dataclerk Jul 15, 2008

    Some people have fun sometimes.

    I am interested to know,what kind of fun can one have at 5 a.m.

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