A 19-year-old Pelham resident has been charged in a fatal crash which occurred on Interstate 65 on Sunday morning, according to Hoover police.
The teenager, identified as Pedro Ivan Rico Mendoza, was charged with reckless murder, two counts of first-degree assault and leaving the scene of the accident. Alcohol was a factor in this crash, Hoover police Lt. Keith Czeskleba said.
The crash occurred on I-65 South between Alford Avenue and U.S. 31 around 3:47 a.m., when a silver Chevrolet Cruze driven by Mendoza was traveling the wrong way in the southbound lanes and collided with a white Honda Accord, according to Hoover police. The Honda was then hit by a black Chevrolet Cruze which was traveling south.
A passenger in the Honda Accord, later identified as 34-year-old Hoover resident Crystal Ponder, was pronounced dead on the scene. The driver and another passenger in the Honda, a 37-year-old Hoover man and a 7-year-old both with the same last name as Ponder, were transported to UAB Hospital and Children's Hospital, respectively.
The driver and passenger of the black Chevrolet Cruse were also transported to UAB Hospital with minor injuries.
Mendoza reportedly fled the scene on foot and was seen walking along Alford Avenue and was captured by police. He was to be transferred from the Hoover Jail to the Jefferson County Jail today. His total bond is set at $100,000.