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COA News 2024

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Siblings, 8 and 5, killed when suspected drunk driver crashed at child’s birthday

BERLIN TOWNSHIP, Mich. – A young brother and sister were killed and several people were injured, some of them seriously, when a vehicle driven by a suspected drunk driver crashed into a young child’s birthday party at a boat club Saturday, a sheriff said from Michigan.

An 8-year-old girl and her 5-year-old brother died at the scene in the crash, when a 66-year-old woman drove 25 feet into the building at Swan Creek Boat Club around 3 p.m. in Berlin Township, about 30 miles (48.2 kilometers) south of Detroit, said Monroe County Sheriff Troy Goodnough.

β€œThe scene was described by first responders as extremely chaotic, with a high level of emotion among those directly involved and those who witnessed this horrific incident,” he said.

Three children and six adults were taken to area hospitals by two helicopters or ambulances with life-threatening injuries, he said. Other injured people were given first aid at the scene and some were taken to hospitals in private vehicles.

Goodnough did not identify the woman driving the vehicle, but said she was taken into custody and was being held at the Monroe County Jail on suspicion of operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated causing death. She was cooperating with authorities and would likely face more charges as the investigation continues, he said.

Authorities were told the woman may have been at a nearby tavern before the incident, Goodnough said, adding that they had closed the establishment and planned to execute a search warrant there as part of the investigation.

Copyright 2024 NPR. For more information, visit https://www.npr.org.