Mom of baby killed in hit and run crash ordered to stand trial

Posted at 5:59 PM, Jun 26, 2017

When the time came to let a judge decide if there was enough evidence to order him to stand trial in a deadly hit and run crash, Deandre Coody waived his right to a preliminary examination. Coody was then ordered to stand trial.

But, Latoya Powels, the driver of the minivan Coody allegedly struck, and her defense attorney wanted the judge to decide.

Powels may not have been the hit and run driver, but police and prosecutors say she was driving drunk that day and failed to properly restrain her children, including her 6-month-old baby boy who was killed after he was ejected from the family's minivan.

The crash happened May 18 at Puritan and Archdale after Coody allegedly blew through the stop sign, crashed into Powels' minivan and kept going as the minivan flipped, ejecting everyone inside.

Kay Powels was in the passenger seat of the minivan that day, and during her daughter's preliminary examination Monday, she could not remember some details when questioned by prosecutors.

But when her daughter's defense attorney questioned her, Powels was adamant that her daughter had not been drinking that day. Kay Powels also appeared confident when she said her grandchildren were properly buckled in the vehicle.

The judge pointed out that there's no way the children could have been properly restrained and then ejected from the vehicle while the car seats remained inside the minivan. He also said it's hard to believe Latoya Powels could have consumed so much alcohol in the moments between the crash and when when witnesses jumped into action to drive her and her children to the hospital that a blood draw would have indicated an alcohol level of nearly three times the legal limit.

Latoya Powels was ordered to stand trial on multiple charges including involuntary manslaughter and child abuse.