Suspect in day care crash appears in court

Published On: Apr 11 2014 09:47:12 AM EDT
Updated On: Apr 11 2014 11:35:13 AM EDT
ORLANDO, Fla. -

A judge on Friday ordered that a man arrested in connection with a crash at a Winter Park day care that killed a 4-year-old girl and injured 14 others will remain jailed.

Robert Alex Corchado, 28, turned himself in at the Orange County Jail on Thursday, a day after the fatal crash at the KinderCare Learning Center at 4035 Goldenrod Road.

At his first appearance before a judge Friday morning, the state said it will file a motion to have Corchado's $100,000 bond revoked, adding that the Florida Highway Patrol believed he planned to flee the country after posting bail.

The judge ruled that Corchado will held on no bond until Monday, at which time he would rule on the state's motion.

Troopers said Corchado was driving a Dodge Durango that hit a Toyota Solara near the day care. The 61-year-old driver of the Solara lost control of his vehicle and slammed into the building, which was holding more than 50 children and staff members, officials said.

The FHP later issued an arrest warrant for Corchado on charges of leaving the scene of an accident involving death and leaving the scene of an accident involving serious bodily injuries.

The Durango was found abandoned Wednesday afternoon at a home off Aloma Avenue. 

Investigators said, however, that Corchado, after the crash, rented a black Mazda SUV with the Florida tag CHR-Q41 from Enterprise on Semoran Boulevard in Winter Park.  The FHP said the Mazda is still being sought by troopers. Anyone with information about the vehicle is asked to call investigators at 407-737-2200.

Records show Corchado, who the FHP says has ties with the Latin Kings gang, was arrested in 2013 on charges of careless driving, hit-and-run and leaving the scene of property damage. He is currently awaiting trial on those charges.

In December, according to authorities, Corchado also left the scene of a crash.  Officials said heroin, cocaine and marijuana were found in his possession, and investigators believe he was going to sell the drugs. Previously, he spent three years in prison on drug charges, and he was arrested at the age of 18 on charges of extortion.

The girl killed in the crash was identified as Lily Quintus. 

Lily's mother, Nicole Quintus, spoke out about the moment she learned what had happened.

"It's not something you expect," Quintus said. "So you get a call from a teacher screaming that a car just ran through your daughter's school and you need to come there as soon as you can. It's not good."

Orange County Fire Rescue said 14 others were injured, including two who were treated at the scene.

On Friday morning, Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children said one patient remains in critical condition.  Officials said three others were now listed in fair condition and three others had been discharged.

Some victims, including children, were taken to Florida Hospital Orlando and other area hospitals.

"My condolences and prayers for those parents because I can't imagine how they are feeling right now.  I was luckily blessed that my son is OK, but I know that there are some children that are not and it breaks my heart," said Evette Riveria, whose son attends KinderCare.

A GoFundMe.com page was created for the Quintus family to help with funeral and medical expenses.  As of Friday morning, more than $40,000 had been raised.

"We are asking for help for one of our brothers. Unfortunately he lost his youngest daughter in a terrible vehicle accident that occurred yesterday 4/9/2014. This story is generating national attention, and we are hoping that we may be able to make a minor difference in this families time of need. They are going to be going through the most difficult time in their lives and will need all the support that can be offered. Thank you for your attention, Groveland Fire Rescue," the GoFundMe page read.

At a news conference after the Wednesday crash, Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs called the crash "an absolute tragedy and disaster."

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