An 11-year-old girl was killed in an overnight crash in Opelousas.
“It’s bad when you cry all day, all day until you think you got no more cry left in you,” said the victim’s aunt, Robbin Gradnigo.
A family member is identifying the girl as Bryla Bell. The relative says Bryla was picked up at her mother’s house by two unknown male suspects in a stolen vehicle. Family members say they don’t know the male suspects, and they don’t know how the two individuals knew Bryla. The relative also says Bryla’s mother heard the two male suspects pick her daughter up, and she tried to follow them in her vehicle, but was unable to catch up to them and lost them at a certain point. The mother said she then called police.
Opelousas police located the vehicle and tried to stop it before the vehicle fled, according to a spokesperson for the police department.
“They told me to just wait there and after about two minutes I said I can’t wait any longer,” said Crystal Bell Edmund, Bryla’s mother, through tears. “Like I need to know if my child is in that truck. But I didn’t know that when I would get to the end of the road she would’ve been dead.”
The spokesperson says an officer saw a male suspect get out of the vehicle near the Walgreens on Creswell Lane. A witness claims they saw two male suspects get out of the vehicle. At this time, police are trying to verify two male suspects were involved with help of surveillance footage.
The suspects fled the vehicle while it was still moving. Bryla allegedly took control of the wheel and then continued to flee from officers before crashing into a tree at St. Landry Catholic Church on N Main Street, the spokesperson says.
Her mother takes that road every day to get to work.