Police: Driver in wreck that killed 2 charged with DWI, 5 other - | WBTV Charlotte

Prosecutors seek to increase charges against hit and run driver


Prosecutors plan to seek second degree murder charges against a young man accused in a hit and run from Memorial Day.

Twenty-year-old Billy Ladario Neal appeared in court Tuesday on several charges, including driving while impaired and driving with a revoked license. He has previous charges for driving with a revoked license.

Monday was Neal's fifth arrest in six months, and his most serious.

Early that morning, Jose Aguilar, 45, was sitting at a red light waiting to make a left turn from East W.T. Harris Boulevard onto Idlewild Road. 

Police say the light turned green, and as Aguilar was in the middle of the intersection making the turn, he was struck by a 2012 Nissan Xterra being driven by Billy Ladario Neal, 20, who was traveling straight on Idlewild Road.

Police said Neal ran the red light, and eventually ran from the crash scene after the vehicles came to rest. 

Jose Aguilar was pronounced deceased at the scene by MEDIC.

Thirty-four-year-old Hugo Rene Duarte Aguilar, Jose's passenger and brother, was ejected from the Chrysler upon impact. Their surviving brother, David, said Hugo's organs were donated to save seven people.

"Their life was church, work and home," said David Duarte in Spanish. He cried openly as he spoke about his brothers. Duarte said they came to America from Honduras and worked in construction.

He did not want to comment on Neal's criminal past.

Approximately 40 minutes after the wreck, police say Neal returned to the scene and was also taken by MEDIC to CMC, for minor injuries. While at the hospital, he was charged with driving while impaired and driving while license revoked.

Speed and drug use also appeared to be factors involved in this crash, officials said. 

Neal's mother told WBTV it was an accident, that there was no malicious intent.

Her son is being held on a $900,000 bond.

This crash is under investigation by the Major Crash Investigation Unit of the Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Department.  Any witnesses are being asked to call Detective Robert Gormican at (704) 432-2169.

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