Local News

Teen driver charged with DWI in fatal Raleigh wreck

Posted January 7, 2012 10:54 a.m. EST
Updated January 8, 2012 10:22 a.m. EST

— A 16-year-old Millbrook High School student faces several charges, including felony death by motor vehicle and driving while impaired, after his 17-year-old passenger was killed in a car wreck over the weekend.

Elizabeth Molloy, also a Millbrook student, died just after 2 a.m. Saturday after, 16-year-old Garrett Prince, lost control of his 1999 Jeep SUV near the intersection of Rainwater Road and North Ridge Drive in Raleigh.

A wreck report states that the Jeep was traveling 75 mph in a 30 mph zone, and witnesses said they saw the SUV run up on the curb, hit a mailbox and then crash into a tree.

Prince, who was treated for injuries at WakeMed, also faces charges of provisional DWI, careless and reckless driving, having an open container of spirituous liquor, speeding and possession of marijuana.

He was in the Wake County jail Saturday evening under a $26,000 bond. His first court appearance was scheduled for Monday.

Meanwhile Saturday, Millbrook students and friends gathered at the crash site for a candlelight vigil to remember Molloy.

Best friend Erin Plummer, who had been with Molloy and Prince at a restaurant hours earlier for dinner, said Molloy wanted to go to Harvard University and dreamed of becoming a lawyer.

She said she knew her friend would have wanted people to smile.

"(I) know Liz would be down here wearing glitter, right now, because that's just who she is," Plummer said. "She'd want us to be happy. She's the most outgoing, happy person I know."

Mourners released a balloon in Molloy's memory.

"There was so much love here tonight, and just all around," Plummer said. "That's just a little symbol for our love for her."

Jared Sink, who lives in the neighborhood, witnessed the crash and pulled Malloy from the burning SUV, returned to the crash scene for the vigil to show his support.

"I think it says we respond strongly and support each other," he said.

Awakened by the crash, he and other neighbors rushed to help the teenagers.

"Fire had already started under the vehicle," Steven Hughes said.

"I went up there and got my water hose and started spraying," added John Dew.

Dew called 911, while Sink said a prayer.

"(It's) just absolutely tragic," Sink said. "To all the young people out there, there's no taxi that's more expensive than someone's life."

Grief counselors will be available to Millbrook High students Monday morning, Wake County schools Superintendent Tony Tata said Sunday.

"The Millbrook High community and all of us in the Wake County Public School System were saddened to learn of the death of one of our students, Elizabeth Molloy, and the injury of another in a vehicle crash early Saturday morning," he said in a statement. "All of our thoughts and prayers go out to their families, friends and loved ones."