May 22, 2024

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Boy, 16, charged with crashing stolen car in St. Paul, killing 14-year-old passenger

A 16-year-old boy was charged Thursday with crashing a stolen car in St. Paul and killing his 14-year-old passenger.

The teenager was charged in Ramsey County juvenile court with criminal vehicular homicide and auto theft in connection with the high-speed crash Monday in the city’s North End that killed Eh Da Lay of St. Paul.

The County Attorney’s Office has yet to decide whether it will seek to prosecute the teen as an adult. The juvenile petition charging the boy includes his name. The Star Tribune is not identifying the boy because of his age.

According to the charges and police:

The car, reported stolen Dec. 4 in Blaine, was spotted by St. Paul officers about 5 p.m. Monday on Maryland Avenue. They were set to pull it over when the driver sped away. Police declined to pursue, per department policy.

Officers saw the car again a few minutes later, and the driver again took off. He soon hit a vehicle near Hyacinth Avenue and Rice Street, continued on and crashed into three utility poles near Rose Avenue and Sylvan Street.

Lay was thrown from the car and found in the street gravely injured. Officers rendered aid and medics took him to Regions Hospital in critical condition. He was transferred to Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare, where he died overnight.

Investigators arrested the 16-year-old driver a few blocks away behind an air conditioner on W. Geranium Avenue. While at the hospital, he told a nurse he was driving 120 mph. But when an officer came into his examination room, the teen said someone else was driving.

The next day, under further questioning, the teen said he was the driver and sped up to try to lose police. He also said he was on Xanax, a sedative, and had taken two pills.

A second 14-year-old passenger told police that the teen was driving and smoking marijuana in the car. The car’s owner said the vehicle was stolen after he left it running momentarily as he stepped away to speak with someone.

Paul Walsh • 612-673-4482

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