Family Of Wrong Way Wreck Victims Reacts To Driver’s Interview
FT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – A self-proclaimed ‘pot princess’ who killed two Coral Springs women in a wrong way crash on the Sawgrass Expressway last year has no memory of the deadly crash.
In an interview with Inside Edition, which aired Wednesday, Kayla Mendoza said she has no recollection of driving on the highway or the accident which claimed the lives of 21-year old Kaitlyn Nicole Ferrante and 21-year old Marisa Caran Catronio, according to the Sun-Sentinel.
In pre-released portions of the interview obtained by the Sun-Sentinel, Mendoza said she has no idea how she survived.
“And when I found out that not only did I get into an accident but the two girls that I got into the accident with passed away, it just really made me wonder why I didn’t too,” said Mendoza. “Those beautiful girls are not here anymore and it’s because of me.”
CBS4 News watched the Inside Edition report with family members of the victims. They were unmoved by Mendoza’s words.
“I feel no compassion for her,” said Christine Ferrante. “What she has to say means nothing to me.”
Marisa Catronio’s father, Gary, said that video of Mendoza’s leg injuries did not elicit sympathy.
“I don’t have the luxury of healing my daughter because my daughter was killed instantly,” Catronio said.
Mendoza does recall having a few drinks with co-workers from a T-Mobile store. In the interview she said her boss, who drove her to the restaurant, knew that she was underage to drink, according to Sun-Sentinel. At the time, Mendoza was 20 and didn’t have a valid driver’s license.
According to a receipt from the Tijuana Taxi Company, which was filed as part of the civil lawsuit brought by the victim’s families against Mendoza and the restaurant, Mendoza had about $50 worth of drinks at the restaurant from 10:15 pm until 12:22 am on November 16-17th. The documents filed by the restaurant in response to the lawsuit show that Mendoza was at the restaurant with about half a dozen other people.
The receipt shows that the then 20-year-old Mendoza drank two large house margaritas and had two other drinks of Patron Silver tequila. The receipt shows a payment of $65.78. The receipt does not show that Mendoza ate anything. There is nothing in civil court file regarding how Mendoza was able to get served alcohol at the restaurant.
After the night of drinking, Mendoza said her boss dropped her off at her car, left at the store.
The victim’s families said they hoped to learn from Mendoza about who was involved in the events that led to the deadly accident.
“Tell us everything she does know in depth about who was with her and what led up to that incident that night,” Catronio said.
The Florida Highway Patrol says at some point that night or the next morning Mendoza tweeted “2 drunk 2 care.” Around 1:45 in the morning 911 calls poured in reporting a head on collision on the Sawgrass Expressway.
Mendoza is accused of driving the wrong way and slamming into a car with Ferrante and Catronio inside, killing them.
“I wish there was something I could say to make up for what happened, but no matter how many ‘sorry’s,’ apologies, tears I cry, no matter how much I hate myself for what happened, nothing I say will change anything,” Mendoza said in the interview. “It was wrong, I can’t change it, I’m just seen as this evil person. So, I don’t know how to get around that.”
As for the “2 drunk 2 care” tweet, Mendoza said it’s been taken out of context. She said it didn’t mean that she was going to get behind the wheel and whatever happened, happened. Instead, she said, it was meant for her boyfriend because the two had just recently argued, according to the paper.
Mendoza, who had a blood alcohol level above the legal limit at the time of the crash, is free on $600,000 bond. She’s charged with DUI Manslaughter, Vehicular Homicide and Driving without a License Causing Death.