Brighton police identify driver in suspected DUI rollover crash that killed a 10-year-old


BRIGHTON, Colo. (KDVR) – A Brighton woman is facing several charges, including vehicular homicide and DUI, after police say she caused a crash that resulted in the death of a child Saturday night.

The driver of the single car involved in the collision has been identified as 27-year-old Karena Cecil. She was arrested at the scene of the crash.

Initially, police reported that the child that died was 11 years old; The child was actually 10 years old.

Around 7:20 p.m., Brighton police officers were dispatched to Interstate 76 and Bromley Lane for a rollover crash. Police said a white sedan traveling eastbound on I-76 in area of Eagle Boulevard lost control, went into an embankment and rolled over into westbound lanes of traffic around 7:20 p.m.

FOX 31 spoke with an eyewitness who was driving behind the car. The witness wishes to remain anonymous because of the sensitivity of what she saw and responded to.

“It was in the horizon, this car was in the air and there was dust everywhere,” the witness said. “I immediately knew it was going to be a very bad accident because of how fast it was going and how it got wrapped around the guardrails and just like flew in the air.”

The witness says she and probably 10 others pulled over and tried to help.

“Once you approached the car you knew the situation, it was oh my gosh,” the witness said.

The early stages of the investigation revealed speed and alcohol were factors in the crash.

According to Brighton police, four people were in the car during the crash: the 10-year-old boy who was killed, two adults and another child.

The witness tells FOX31 the other child was 7 years old and the younger brother of the victim who died.

“It was heart wrenching because he just kept on asking me to help his brother, help his brother, which you couldn’t,” the witness said. 

FOX 31 Problem Solvers uncovered Cecil’s Colorado Bureau of Investigation records showing a trail of traffic charges in the past, even charges pegging her a habitual offender dating back to 2016. Her record also shows another DUI in 2017.

“It was so senseless it was still daylight outside and whether did not play a factor it was all about speed,” the witness said. “An innocent little boy. I know he was playing baseball probably earlier in the day because his backpack from baseball was just thrown in the highway too and it was just heart wrenching.”

Cecil is currently being held in the Adams County Detention Facility on charges of vehicular homicide, careless driving causing injury, child abuse (two counts), revoked driving status, DUI and no proof of insurance.

Karena Cecil. Photo credit: Brighton Police Department

Anyone with information about this crash is urged to contact the Brighton Police Department at (303) 288-1535.

A gofundme has been created to help the 10-year-old boy’s father with funeral expenses.

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