Tennessee woman sells car to 13-year-old for $80; teen crashes, killing elderly man

A 37-year-old Tennessee woman has been arrested for vehicular homicide after she knowingly sold a car to a 13-year-old boy who was later involved in high-speed accident that killed an elderly man.

Katrina Lyn Russell was arrested Wednesday in Davidson County, the Nashville Metro Police Department said. She was charged with vehicular homicide due to reckless conduct and contributing to the delinquency of a minor.

The teen, who has not been named because of his age, was charged in juvenile court with vehicular homicide by recklessness, driving without a license, and no proof of insurance, police said.

Police said Russell gave the boy the keys to the Dodge Dart — which was registered in her name — for $80, although it’s not known when the sale took place. She told police she knew he was 13.

The fatal crash took place around 9 a.m. on March 5 as the underage driver was fleeing the scene of a hit-and-run crash. The other driver involved in that crash tried to pursue the teen but broke off as the 13-year-old reached speeds of 90 to 100 mph.

Nashville police said he ran a red light, “swerved to miss another vehicle, and lost control of the car,” crashing into a Dodge Challenger driven by 71-year-old David Cheatham. Cheatham was waiting to pull out onto the street when he was hit. He was pronounced dead at the scene, and the teen was taken to Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. He was charged when he was released from the hospital a few days later.

The Tennessean reported that surveillance footage from a nearby business showed the Dart enter the frame at “a much higher speed” than other traffic, sliding sideways, citing an affidavit filed in court.

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[Featured image: March 5 crash scene and Katrina Russell (inset)/Metro Nashville Police Department]