rocky river high school student martha rosales killed - WBTV 3 News, Weather, Sports, and Traffic for Charlotte, NC

Teen driver in court after deadly wreck; visitation this weekend

Posted: Updated:
Sydney Danice McDaniel  (Source: Mecklenburg County Jail) Sydney Danice McDaniel (Source: Mecklenburg County Jail)

A Rocky River High School student made her first court appearance Friday via monitor, after a deadly wreck Wednesday night.

18-year-old Sydney Danice McDaniel is charged with involuntary manslaughter, reckless driving,  driving after consuming while under 21 years old, fictitious tag on vehicle, contributing to the delinquency of a juvenile, and possession of marijuana.

The judge appointed McDaniel a public defender as the teen went back to jail.  While McDaniel remains in jail, her 11-month old baby named Michael, is out of the hospital.  WBTV saw the baby being put in a car by his father. Relatives say the boy is fine and the father paid a visit to DSS concerning the well being of the 11-month old.

Police said McDaniel was drinking Wednesday night just before she crashed her 1991 Honda Accord into a tree on Pence Road at Holly Hill Road.

In court Friday, crash investigators said they are still investigating and it could take up to a month to complete their investigation. They are still working to determine how fast McDaniel was driving in the 35 mph zone. They are also still determining her Blood Alcohol Content (BAC).

McDaniel will be back in court April 17 for a bond hearing, and again April 22 for a probable cause hearing.

18-year-old Toni Williams survived the crash. She talked to WBTV Thursday and said the teens were headed home when the car went out of control and crashed into a tree.

"She tried to get back on the road," Williams said. "And it started to swerve and she tried to like get it back in the same lane and we ended up wrecking."

McDaniel's 11-month-old son was also in the car. Police say the baby was in serious condition at Carolinas Medical Center but has been released.

16-year-old Martha Rosales was in the backseat. She was pronounced dead at the scene.

Williams said Rosales was her best friend - they considered themselves sisters.

"She's always crazy," Williams said. "Funny, making jokes and loved to eat pork."

"Why?" She added, "Why did it have to be us?"

It's not clear how much McDaniel had to drink before she got behind the wheel, but police say McDaniel was drinking.

"We didn't even know she was drunk," Williams said. "Cause if I knew she was drunk, we wouldn't have went anywhere."

Williams says she hopes others will learn from them.

"Whatever you do," she said, "Do not drink and drive. Please don't drink and drive.  It's the worst. Even if you think you are fine and think you can do it, don't take the chance."

McDaniel was arrested upon her release from the hospital.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools said all three teens were students at Rocky River High School in Mint Hill.

The school district is currently on spring break, but officials say grief counselors will be available Monday when students return.

Family and friends will say goodbye to Rosales this weekend.

A visitation is planned for Sunday, April 7 at Carolina Funeral Service & Cremation Center (5505 Monroe Road). The visitation is scheduled from 5 p.m. until 7 p.m. with a prayer service to follow.

Copyright 2013 WBTV. All rights reserved.

Powered by WorldNow