NORTH MIAMI, FLA. (WSVN) - Newly released surveillance video captured the moment a driver struck and killed three teenage soccer players in North Miami, as friends and loved ones shared their heartbreak over the tragedy.
The footage shows the three teens, 17-year-old Richecarde Dumay, 15-year-old Lens Desir and 13-year-old Gedeon Desir, walking on the sidewalk in the area of Northeast 125th Street and 14th Avenue, at around 5:15 a.m., Saturday.
About 20 seconds later, the camera captured a black SUV speeding through the intersection in their direction.
Police said the teens died on impact.
“The driver of the vehicle lost control of the vehicle, went onto the sidewalk and struck the kids,” said North Miami Police spokesperson Natalie Buissereth.
Rescue crews transported the driver of the SUV to an area hospital, where she remains in serious condition.
The team’s coach had the daunting task of telling the team they will never see three of their beloved brothers out on the field again.
“They were hurting, crying, showing their love, expressing their love for their teammates,” the Rev. Mike Davis said.
Monday morning, Lens’ parents stopped by the scene of the crash. 7News cameras captured the teen’s mother breaking down in tears.
“I miss my son, my first son. It’s very, very difficult,” she said.
“Some woman drive so fast, almost 85 miles per hour and take my son’s life,” said Panel Jean Desir, the victim’s father. “She was driving so fast. Where did she come from?”
Residents in the area said they’re all too familiar with the street and describe it as dangerous.
“It’s a dangerous corner, like I say,” resident Damien Brown said. “This corner right here, I see many times a lot of cars come speeding around this corner. Close incidents.”
The teens, who were all dressed in their uniforms, were on their way to catch a bus, so they could meet up with their soccer teammates to play a match in Weston.
Both Richecarde and Lens were star athletes at Miami Edison High School, and loved ones said they wanted to take part in the tournament because they wanted to finally be noticed and hopefully receive college scholarships.
“It’s really hurting our family right now because we can’t be going through this thing, and both of them was innocent kids, and we really miss him,” said Merlin, Desir’s cousin.
Father Reginald Jean-Mary, a local pastor, said Gedeon, the youngest of the three, was active in his church community.
“This was a really young man who made a lot of sacrifices, who had a good vision for tomorrow, who had good ideals in life,” said Jean-Mary.
Friends and loved ones have been leaving flowers, candles and balloons at a growing memorial at the scene of the crash.
Monday afternoon, leaders and players from the teen’s soccer league gathered in Little Haiti. They said the victims’ dreamed of getting noticed for their skills on the field and to go to college.
“When I first hear it, it hurt so bad I couldn’t even cry,” said teammate Dedison Joseph. “I was just thinking. I’m like, ‘Man, is this really happening?'”
“Every time I’m sleeping, when I close my eyes, I see him in front of me,” said Nineline Dumezile, a friend of one of the victims.
They told 7News that two of the victims’ families live in Haiti, where their bodies will be sent for burial.
Lens’ father shared his last moments with his son before they went to bed Friday evening.
“Last time I see him, Friday night, just near him, good wish to him while we eat,” he said as he fought back tears.
As the team struggles to move on, they said they are looking to a higher power to help them along the way.
“Through God, everything is possible, and that’s one thing that we believe in: prayer,” said Gomez Laleau, the team’s president.
Police have not yet released information on the SUV’s driver. They have asked for the community’s patience while they continue to investigate.
According to The Miami Herald, sources close to the investigation said the driver was a 31-year-old woman who smelled of alcohol.
Funeral arrangements are currently being made for the victims.
There will be counselors at their schools on Tuesday to help their friends and teachers cope with the loss.
A memorial is scheduled to take place at Miami Edison Senior High after dismissal.
The Haiti Youth Soccer Organization has set up a GoFundMe page to help the victims’ families with expenses. If you would like make a donation, click here.
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