CHARLOTTE, N.C. – The driver accused of causing a crash on I-485 that left five people dead and several injured is now facing multiple charges.
Dakeia Quavontae Charles is charged with five counts of second-degree murder, driving while impaired, driving while license revoked because of an impairment-related revocation, and speeding, according to jail records.
Investigators say Charles, 24, was driving the vehicle that crashed into a box truck traveling on the outer loop of I-485 near Oakdale Road shortly before 8 p.m. on Friday, July 3.
Charles was reportedly speeding and caused both vehicles to lose control upon impact. Both vehicles ran off the left side of the roadway, crossed the median barrier, and the box truck was struck by two cars in the oncoming traffic lanes.
A vehicle struck head on was carrying a family of four from Belmont. All were killed, authorities say.
Officials later identified the family as Matthew and Andrea Obester and their two daughters, Violet, 7, and Elizabeth, 12.
A person in a second vehicle hit in the oncoming lanes also died, and another was injured. Officials have not released their identity, but say the driver killed was from Indian Trail.
The box truck driver suffered serious but non-life threatening injuries.
Charles was treated for extensive injuries, troopers say, and charged upon his release from the hospital.
While assisting with an investigation into the accident the following morning, the highway patrol says Trooper Adolfo A. Lopez-Alcedo was also injured when a passing motorist hit his patrol car from behind, which then struck Lopez-Alcedo.
He was transported to a nearby hospital with life threatening injuries, and is recovering. Lopez-Alcedo has been with the NCSHP for two years.