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Everyone knows someone who went for a joyride as a teenager. Even though it’s common, putting untrained teens behind the wheel is dangerous. Two Livonia teens learned that lesson the hard way when they were killed while driving a stolen Mustang.
The lure of driving is strong for younger teenagers on the brink of getting their licenses. But driving is a skill not a talent. It requires proper training, and a lot of practice, to be safe on the roads.
That lesson came too late for 2 freshmen at Livonia Churchill High School. The 14 and 15 year olds appear to have stolen a white Ford Mustang and taken it out for a joyride.
The Livonia Police Department investigated the pair doing doughnuts in the Garfield Elementary School parking lot late Sunday evening, September 25, 2016. An officer tried to stop the boys, but they sped away from the traffic stop.
The chase crossed into Plymouth Township, where the Mustang crashed on Plymouth Road near Haggerty. When police found it, the Mustang was on fire and both occupants were deceased.
It appears that the Mustang crashed into a minivan heading east, rolled over, and went through a parking lot before coming to rest in a wooded area above Hines Drive. The husband and wife in the minivan received minor injuries.
The families of the 2 boys aren’t necessarily thinking about money right now. But when the medical and funeral expenses come due, they may find themselves facing a different kind of pain.
When a person steals a vehicle and gets into an accident, he or she is excluded from receiving no-fault insurance benefits. Even though the teens may otherwise qualify under their parents’ policies, the fact that they stole the Mustang will cut their families off from financial help paying their final expenses.
There are some things parents can do to protect their teens from the dangers of joyriding.
Teenagers see driving as a rite of passage to adulthood. While they may be eager, they also need to know the risks that go with getting behind the wheel. Talk to your teens about the dangers of joyriding, so they don’t follow the path of these 2 Livonia boys.