Lucas Dos Reis Laurindo, 26, was driving the pick-up truck that hit the van that the Smith family was in on the day of the crash, according to WCVB 5 ABC. The accident occurred along State Road 429. At the time, the eight members of the Smith family from Massachusetts were on vacation at Walt Disney World, and they were driving a rented 2020 Toyota Sienna.
According to Kim Montes, spokesperson for the Florida Highway Patrol, Dos Reis Laurindo did not slow down as he made his way toward traffic near mile marker 1 on State Road 429, and ended up crashing his Ram pickup truck into the Smith family’s rental van, according to the Orlando Sentinel.
“Lucas Dos Reis Laurindo was driving a 2016 Ram 3500 truck. He failed to slow as he approached the rear of a 2020 Toyota Sienna van. The front of the truck struck the rear of the van. The van overturned onto its side after the impact,” Montes stated, according to WCVB 5 ABC.
Julie Smith, 41, her daughter Scarlett, 5, and her mother, Josephine Fay, 76, were killed at the scene. Smith’s 11-year-old son Jaxon was injured and transported to the Arnold Palmer Children’s Hospital, but died from his injuries later on.
The other occupants of the van were Julie Smith’s husband, her father, and her two other daughters, who were injured but survived. A GoFundMe has been created to help the family.
Florida Highway Patrol stated that Dos Reis Laurindo was at fault, but the strongest charge they could give him was a careless driving citation.
“The result of the crash investigation has determined that Mr. Dos Reis Laurindo was at fault for the collision. Under Florida law, the strongest charge that could be made against him is a ticket issued for careless driving. Mr. Dos Reis Laurindo was issued the ticket [at the beginning of March],” Florida Highway Patrol stated.
On Feb. 21, Dos Reis Laurindo was arrested for violating his visa, and at the time of the crash he was attempting go to the airport to board a flight back to Brazil, according to WFTV.
Dos Reis Laurindo is currently being held at the ICE center in Glades County. He reportedly said that authorities told him he was detained because he might have worked illegally in the United States.
From NTD News