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Investigation finds brakes worked in runaway car that injured four children

POSTED: August 18, 2014 9:40 p.m.

All of the brakes in the 1988 Acura Legend that injured four children on Price Way last month were functioning, Georgia State Patrol Trooper Brodie Forrester said.

“We got the vehicle inspected by a certified mechanic, and we found that, due to his inspection, the emergency brake does work properly and all the brakes work properly,” Forrester said.

There is no indication, Forrester said, as to whether the emergency brake was applied at the time of the incident.

The car’s owner, Oleksandra Y. Myrna, 32, was charged with four counts of reckless conduct after her Acura rolled out of her driveway on July 27 and hit four children playing across the street. She booked herself into Hall County Jail around 6:30 p.m. the day after the incident, leaving the jail on a $4,000 bond just after midnight. The charges came from a lack of an applied emergency brake, Forrester said.

Myrna’s attorney Doug Henry said she had only been driving the car for a few weeks, the Acura being loaned from a friend.

From reviewing the incident, Henry said his client did not fully activate the parking brake when she pulled up on the lever. After returning from church, Myrna and her 4-year-old son Mira may have changed the gear accidentally.

“When (Mira) gets out, because it’s a two-door car, he climbs over the console to exit the vehicle, and she thinks that when they came back from church that he may have knocked the gear stick out of gear into neutral,” Henry said.

Sebastian Rangeo, 5, and Julian Rangeo, 8, were flown from the scene near Sardis and Price roads to Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Egleston, and were believed to be in stable condition later that night. Two other children, Emilee Guerra, 1, and Savannah Brown, 1, were taken by ambulance to Northeast Georgia Medical Center, being released later. All four are believed to be out of medical care, Forrester said.

Henry said two weeks ago that Myrna intends to fight the charges, saying they were unjustified. Mira was also playing under the tree that day, but he escaped unharmed.

“Because the children were sort of scattered around, her child was several feet away from where the children were who got injured,” Henry said.

Running to get soda and other beverages from the store, Henry said Myrna realized she didn’t have her keys, going back into the home to retrieve them. When she went inside, the car rolled.

The Acura is no longer being held for investigation, Forrester said. No indication was given as to whether the vehicle had been retrieved by Myrna.

“As of Wednesday, that vehicle has been released and was free to be picked up by her or the owner,” Forrester said.


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