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Teen arrested nearly 2 years after crash that killed friend, injured 2 firefighters

Police say Alexander Martinez, now 18, was under the influence of alcohol at time of crash

Alexander Martinez is facing multiple charges after a fatal crash on I-95 in Miami.
Alexander Martinez is facing multiple charges after a fatal crash on I-95 in Miami. (Miami-Dade Corrections & Rehabilitation/WPLG)

MIAMI – A suspect has been arrested nearly two years after a deadly crash on Interstate 95 in which a teen was killed and several others, including two firefighters, were injured.

According to an arrest warrant, Miami firefighters were trying to extricate a person from a disabled vehicle just before 2 a.m. on May 19, 2018, that was in the right northbound shoulder of I-95 just south of the Northwest 62nd Street exit.

Police said Alexander Martinez, now 18, was driving around 83 mph in his gray Toyota RAV4 when he lost control of the SUV and the vehicle began spinning.

Authorities said the vehicle hit a concrete wall, bounced off of it and then continued rotating, eventually sideswiping a parked City of Miami Fire Rescue truck.

The vehicle then proceeded to slide backwards into the rear of a parked City of Miami Fire Rescue engine.

According to the arrest warrant, equipment from the fire rescue engine became dislodged and struck two firefighters, one of whom sustained life-threatening injuries.

Authorities said four people were inside the RAV4 and ranged in age from 15 to 18 at the time. One of the teens, James Villa, was killed in the crash.

According to the arrest warrant, Martinez admitted to consuming alcohol that night, but claimed he was not the driver of the RAV4.

Authorities said they later learned Martinez was the driver after interviewing the injured firefighters and other survivors.

The warrant states that Martinez had a blood alcohol level of .091 percent.

Villa’s sister spoke to Local 10 News reporter Terrell Forney Friday and said she was grateful to the Florida Highway Patrol for investigating the crash and proving that Martinez was behind the wheel. She said he has never apologized or reached out to her family since the death of her brother.

Martinez appeared in court Friday and was ordered held in lieu of a $100,000 bond. He is charged with vehicular homicide, DUI manslaughter, DUI causing serious bodily injury and DUI causing property damage.


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