Details Emerge in Deadly Lewisdale Car Crash

State's attorney's office considering charges against driver who struck five children with her SUV, killing her daughter.

New details have emerged in last night's tragic incident in Lewisdale where One of the children, the 8-year-old daughter of the driver, died from her injuries. 

According to Prince George’s County Police, the accident in the 2200 block of Hannon Street occurred at 8:47 p.m., when 33-year-old Marianable Cruz-Lopez accidentally struck the five children, ranging in age from two to 11. Two of the children were her own, including the toddler, who had minor injuries, and Natalie Hernandez Cruz, 8, who died.

Three of the victims, the toddler and the 6-and-7-year-old boys, had their medical conditions upgraded from critical to stable, according to police. The 11-year-old boy remains in serious condition. 

Before the incident, police responded to Cruz-Lopez's house for a disorderly landlord-tenant dispute at 8:13 p.m. Police officers investigated the dispute and cleared the scene at 8:40 p.m.

"We're not fully briefed on who is acting as landlord, who is tenant, who is acting as render," said Julie Parker, public information officer for the Prince George's County Police Department. "That's a civil matter which we did not investigate." 

Seven minutes after police left, the tragedy happened. 

The same police officers, who were still in the neighborhood, were sent back to the scene where they found Cruz-Lopez's dark Ford Expedition lodged the garage and two children unresponsive. 

PGPD Lt. David Lloyd told the media in a press conference Thursday that Cruz-Lopez was parked in a driveway with her car facing the street, when she accidentally began accelerating in reverse, striking the five children who were playing in the driveway. The car continued backing up and struck a corner of the garage.

Upon arriving on the scene, police immediately began to render first aid to the victims based on the severity of their wounds. Parker described how Officer Christopher Grimes was able to revive one of the unresponsive victims with CPR.

Cruz-Lopez could face charges in relation to the incident. The state's attorney's office is reviewing the incident, according to Parker. 

According to court records, Cruz-Lopez was recently charged with a number of traffic violations in Montgomery County. On March 30, following a traffic stop on New Hampshire Avenue, Cruz-Lopez was charged with providing a false name to police, failure to display a driver's license to police, driving without a license, failing to use a child safety seat to secure a child under the age of eight, and driving with defective brake lights.

Parker said that Cruz-Lopez does not have a driver's license.

Police say they still believe that drugs or alcohol were not a factor in last night's incident. 

Cruz-Lopez also goes by a number of different names. Initial police reports identified her as Maria. Court records list Cruz-Lopez as "Mariana". Police now identify her as "Marianable".

FRANCINE ABELL (ROCKELLI) June 02, 2012 at 12:42 PM
Welcome to America! I live in Lewisdale and it's a real "mecca" for those who have no intention of learning and then following our laws. For the very least, she's our problem until all of these charges get resolved. She's proven she didn't come across our border waving the American flag. (I could write a book about what is going on unchallenged in this little neighborhood in America),
Gayle Rockelli June 02, 2012 at 02:24 PM
As a former resident of Lewisdale, which by the way, was named after Mr. Lewis who built that community after WWII. My family bought one of the new houses and still owns that house today. The zoning violations that have occurred over the years are enormous, from 30 unrelated people living in one single family house (less than 1200 sq. feet), to paving over an entire front yard and most of the back with Macadem (next door to my house). Forget the fact that the gas lines run under the front yard. I requested through Will Campos' office a County inspector come to my street. He came and told me that there was nothing he could do except cite everyone on the street so it didn't look like he was targeting any one house! The reason I asked him there was to cite a van travel service that was operating two doors up from me and was parking numerous large vans on the street and servicing those vans in the back yard with full automotive repair (there's no space inbetween houses to get back there). I could go on and on about the public urination, cases of beer left in front of my house (and broken bottles), condons, you name it. Lewisdale has become a filthy place and the homes are now broken down but there are plenty of people who own big expensive SUVs parked outside them. The Washington Post said Ms. Cruz-Lopez was driving a Ford Expedition even though she worked two cleaning jobs and has been here a decade (and not bettered herself). She was an illegal renter from another renter.
Ed Arthur June 02, 2012 at 10:35 PM
well said gayle , the town has turned to %^&*(*&


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