Teen killed in crash involving community activist laid to rest - KCTV5 News

Teen killed in crash involving community activist laid to rest

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(Ken Ullery/KCTV) (Ken Ullery/KCTV)
(Ken Ullery/KCTV) (Ken Ullery/KCTV)

Tierra Smith, 17, a student at Raytown High School, was laid to rest Saturday.

She was one of four teens struck near a Kansas City park the afternoon of Jan. 30.

Visitation was from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. with the funeral following at The Worship Center of Kansas City in Lenexa, KS.

Her family has set up an account to pay for Smith's funeral costs.

Tamika Pledger, a community activist and political candidate for a seat on the Unified Government of Wyandotte County/KCK commission, is accused of hitting the teens. She's since posted bond and is out of jail after being charged with involuntary manslaughter and three counts of reckless aggravated battery.

A police report shows she was going at least 54 mph in a 20 mph zone when she struck the group at 13th Street and Troup Avenue last month. Witnesses say her daughter called her to break up a fight.

According to court documents, about lunchtime some girls had been apparently preparing for a fight. Police say they went to the bus stop corner to wait for girls to get off the school bus.

A fight then broke out in the middle of the street. As this was occurring, Pledger raced to the scene in her silver Mercedes-Benz. Police said Pledger was traveling a "a very high rate of speed," as she came up on the fight.

"Everyone scattered and as they did most of (the) teenagers…It appeared that the driver swerved toward the pedestrians. Most heard a 'boom' and saw bodies flying," according to court documents.

Some witnesses told KCTV5 that Pledger immediately screamed for help and that her brakes failed.

Witnesses told police that Pledger got out of her vehicle and said, "I am sorry. I am so sorry everyone, but I'm just protecting my family too."

Smith died a week after the crash. She suffered severe brain injuries including trauma to her brain.

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