Lawrence man, 23, charged in connection to crash that killed 11-year-old

Community mourning 8-year-old who died in weekend crash

LAWRENCE, Mass. — A 23-year-old Lawrence man has been charged in connection to a car crash that killed an 11-year-old on Saturday night.

According to the Essex County District Attorney's office, Selvin Manuel Lima drove away from a Lawrence Police officer after an attempted traffic stop and lost control of his car before crashing.

Authorities said police attempted to stop Lima's car at the intersection of South Union and Winthrop for speeding and erratic driving.

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The DA's office said Lima turned onto Winthrop Avenue, and as he approached the intersection of Winthrop and Andover Street, lost control of his car, crossed over to the opposite side of the road and struck a black 2016 Honda Civic head-on.

Police said there were five people in the Honda that was hit. One of the passengers in the Honda was 11-year-old Taysha Rohena Silva, of Peabody, who was transported to Lawrence General Hospital where she was pronounced dead.

"I seen the little girl in the back, the littlest one was on the floor, all clenched up, and the girl that was in the back, she passed away right there," witness Wayne Boucher told Boston 25 News.

The other victims, including a 27-year old Lawrence man, a 29-year old Peabody woman, and 2 girls, ages 8 and 15, also from Peabody, were transported to local hospitals with serious injuries.

One witness, who did not want to be identified, rushed out to try and help the family trapped inside one of the vehicles.

"I tried to rescue them, I got one lady out from the front, the car was in smoke, I was all smokey too," he said.

He says he helped pull a woman to safety from the crash, but noticed children who were in bad shape too.

One neighbor described the scene she saw after calling 911.

"I heard [a] crash, smash and then I called 911 from my friend's home," said Diane George. "I saw a girl on the ground [...] and they pulled babies from that black car and a guy from that black car.

Lima was arrested for manslaughter and motor vehicle homicide by reckless operation among other charges.

He was flown to Brigham & Women’s Hospital with serious injuries. He is expected to be arraigned on Monday at the hospital.

Lima is being charged with manslaughter, motor vehicle homicide by reckless operation, assault and battery with a dangerous weapon causing serious bodily injury, operating after license suspension, failing to stop for a police officer, marked lanes and speeding.

Lawrence Police along with Massachusetts State Police and the Essex County District Attorney’s Office are investigating the crash.

Editor's note: A previous version of this story identified the deceased victim as an 8-year-old girl. The story and headline have since been corrected to reflect the victim was 11 years old and proper identification.