Driver now charged with vehicular homicide in St. Paul light rail crash

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Kanyi Lee Williams

The driver who crashed into a utility pole on the light rail tracks in St. Paul Friday evening is now charged with criminal vehicular homicide after one of the victims died from their injuries

Kanyi Lee Williams, 22, was allegedly driving the car and later blew a preliminary breath test of .118. He was initially charged with four counts of criminal vehicular operation

According to the criminal complaint, officers found Williams walking near the scene of the crash, while the other four occupants of the vehicle remained trapped inside. 

All four occupants and Williams were taken to the hospital. One of the victims, Deshawn Lloyd Perry, died from his injuries on Monday. Of the other three victims, one needed surgery for a fractured skull and bleeding in her brain, one remains in stable condition and the other has been released. 

A GoFundMe for Deshawn Llyod Perry's family can be found here.

The Ramsey County Attorney’s office updated the charges on Wednesday to include two counts of criminal vehicular homicide. He is still charged with two counts of criminal vehicular operation. 

A witness told officers she saw Williams pass multiple cars on University in his Honda CRV when he suddenly "jerked" to the left and drove into the pole, the charges say. 

While at the hospital, Williams told police he tried to go around a car in front of him, overcorrected and hit the pole.

After the crash, officers noticed Williams smelled of alcohol, he was slurring his speech, and his eyes were bloodshot and watery. Williams said he had "a glass or two" of hard liquor two hours before the crash, though his breath test was well above the legal limit.

Later during an interview Williams said he saw another car coming into his lane and "freaked out," making a series of "hard" turns before hitting the pole. According to the complaint, he said he had "failed his friends and deserves whatever punishment he receives."