Barton Deiters -
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) -- A man who crashed his pickup truck into a car, killing a mother and leaving twin boys critically injured will go to trial.
According to witnesses who testified Wednesday, Douglas Crystal had been drinking in the hours before the crash and then crawled out of the window of his truck and ran as a mother lay dying and her 5-year-old sons suffered from injuries.
Police testified in Grand Rapids District Court that Crystal was travelling at least 91 mph in a Ford F-150 around 8:20 p.m. on Sept. 15 before crashing into the Ford Fusion containing 33-year-old Meranda Baguss and her twin sons, Chauncey and Tony.
The crash at Ritchie Avenue and 15 Mile Road in Courtland Township left the mother dead and sent the boys to the hospital with critical injuries.
Witnesses said that 36-year-old Crystal confessed to crawling out the window and making his way through the woods to his home on Stout Avenue, about a mile and a half from the crash.
Witnesses said that Crystal saw police at his home when he got close and stayed away until after 4 a.m.
When he did come home, witnesses said he talked to his three children and hung around for more than an hour until his wife called police.
While friends and co-workers who had been drinking with Crystal earlier on the golf course said he did not appear drunk, another said she smelled alcohol on his breath.
On Wednesday, Judge Sara Smolenski bound Crystal's case to felony court. He faces six charges including reckless driving causing death, leaving the scene of a deadly crash and drunk driving.
Crystal faces a maximum of 15 years in prison if convicted.
Before that, Smolenski had some harsh words for the defendant.
"Would you purposely run away from the scene of an accident? It's hard for us to get our brain around, because we're thinking we don't even have to know Miranda Baggus -- maybe she wasn't dead right then," she said. "Maybe the whole focus she wanted was someone to tell me you'll take care of my kids,"Smolenski said. "If, in fact, at the end your reason for leaving was not to be in more trouble than you already were, then it appears to be cowardly."
Family members of the twins said Tony is recovering his short-term memory at home while Chauncey continues to fight for his life in the hospital.
Photos: Irish on Ionia 2018
2 kids hit by car in Grand Rapids, hospi
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