6-year-old boy dies following two-vehicle crash near Lakeland
A 6-year-old boy died Tuesday morning, June 16, 2020, following a two-vehicle crash in the Highland City area of Lakeland.
Deputies from the Polk County Sheriff’s Office were dispatched to the crash between a car and pick-up truck at U.S. 98 and Wallace Road, at about 6:50 am.
The boy, identified as Liam Earley of Bartow, had been ejected from the truck and subsequently suffered head trauma. He was transported to Lakeland Regional Health Medical Center where he was pronounced deceased.
Liam was a passenger in a gray 2019 Ford Ranger pick-up truck, driven by 38-year-old Lisa Earley. Also in that vehicle was 8-year-old Daylen Earley.
The other vehicle involved, a white 2018 Toyota Corolla, was driven by 38-year-old Jose Vazquez Clemente of Lakeland.
Liam was the only one to suffer any substantial injuries from the crash.
According to the preliminary investigation, both vehicles were travelling north on U.S. 98 when, according to witnesses, the Toyota began drifting back-and-forth across the northbound lanes. The left-front of the Toyota struck the right-rear of the Ford, causing the truck to spin, then roll several times.
Liam was ejected from the truck and landed on the shoulder of the road.
Clemente stated that he fell asleep while driving.
The northbound lanes of U.S. 98 were closed for approximately four hours.
The investigation is ongoing, and charges are pending its completion.