“Man Sentenced for New Year’s Day Crash That Killed Four in Miami”

By | July 21, 2023



A man who was accused of killing four people in a violent New Year’s Day crash in 2021 has accepted a plea deal and has been sentenced to 14 years in prison. Alex Garcia, who was 16 years old at the time of the crash, was charged with four counts of vehicular homicide, four counts of DUI manslaughter, and two counts of DUI with serious bodily injury. The crash occurred when Garcia’s Tahoe collided with another car while traveling at 111 miles per hour on West Flagler Street in Miami.

The victims of the accident were identified as Yuhlia Gelats, Christian Mohip, Andres Zacarias, and Jenser Salazar, all in their early twenties. During the court hearing, the victims’ loved ones expressed their grief and anger towards Garcia. Andres Medina, Gelats’ father, stated that he would never forgive Garcia for his actions, emphasizing that the tragedy was entirely preventable.

Florida Highway Patrol Cpl. Christine Gracey also condemned Garcia’s actions, stating that the crash should not be considered an accident. She addressed Garcia’s mother, blaming her for allowing her son to drive without a license and while under the influence. Garcia’s defense attorney, Brian Kirlew, stated that his client acknowledged his guilt and believed that accepting the plea deal was the right thing to do.

In addition to his prison sentence, Garcia will also serve two years of house arrest and eight years of probation. As part of the plea deal, he must donate $100 to the Crime Victims Fund every year while under supervision. Kirlew emphasized that Garcia and his family had no involvement in the vandalism that occurred at the victims’ memorials and gravesites, denouncing those acts.

The sentencing brings some closure to the victims’ families, although their pain and loss will never fully dissipate. The case serves as a tragic reminder of the devastating consequences of reckless driving and the importance of responsible decision-making behind the wheel..