Pompano Beach Middle School students mourn student killed in crash involving stolen vehicle

Unclear whether anyone will face charges

By Madeleine Wright - Reporter, Liane Morejon - Reporter

POMPANO BEACH, Fla. - Pompano Beach Middle School students and teachers are mourning a 12-year-old girl who was one of two children killed early Sunday in a crash that police said involved a stolen vehicle.

The girl was identified by her grandmother as Chayanna Nesmith. Chayanna's sister, Teeanna Nesmith, 13, was injured in the crash.

"I was just sad and I was crying, because people that I know is dying early," seventh-grader Caleb Batts said. 

The rollover wreck happened around 3 a.m. Sunday on Northwest 15th Street in Pompano Beach.

Broward Sheriff's Office deputies said seven children, ages 12 to 14, were riding in a stolen vehicle with no adults when the car ran off the road, flipped over and landed upside down on railroad tracks.

The driver was identified as a 14-year-old boy. 

Chayanna was taken to Broward Health Medical Center, where she died. Another girl Anacshia Johnson, 13, was pronounced dead at the scene, and the other five children were hurt in the crash.

Chaynna and Teeanna both attended Pompano Beach Middle School, where students were in disbelief Monday.

"I was like, 'Whoa,' because -- first, I had called my friend and I was like, 'Is it true?'" seventh-grader Jakeria Bowens said. "Her mom was crying, and I posted my condolences to her. I just feel like it should have all never happened because it's really sad."

Family members said the children had gone to the movies Saturday night before the crash happened.

Seventh-grader Marquis Floyd told Local 10 News that he was with the group before the crash happened.

"I went with my two cousins, but the boy that was driving -- all of them -- they're my friends," Marquis said. 

Marquis said he didn't know how his friends got the car they were riding in.

"He had the keys to it, so I don't know if he stole it," Marquis said. 

Detectives are now working to figure out how the kids got their hands on a stolen car, who it belonged to and why the driver lost control.

Records show the 14-year-old driver had previously been arrested in March in Broward County on a robbery charge. He was also arrested in February, in Coral Springs, on charges of grand theft auto and battery on a firefighter, and he was arrested on July 22, 2017, in Coconut Creek, on charges of loitering/prowling.

So far, the teen is not facing any criminal charges.

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