The family of a Delaware teenager says she is devastated after accidentally hitting and killing her brother on Tuesday.
"She did not do this on purpose. She loves her brother," said the stepmother of the two siblings, who did not want to be identified.
19-year-old Sheila Martinez-Rodriguez is charged with manslaughter and leaving the scene of an accident. Witnesses say she ran over her 18-year-old brother with a mini-van, dragged his body 100 feet and then fled the scene.
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"It was an awful day. A day no parent would wish to ever have," the stepmother said.
According to police records, Martinez-Rodriguez and her brother, Jesus Martinez, were arguing outside their home in Elsmere, Delaware Tuesday afternoon. Martinez-Rodriguez told police that she and Jesus both got out of the car but then she got back in behind the wheel. She told police that she was afraid her brother was going to hit her. Witnesses said one of the siblings used a baseball bat during the fight.
Police say Martinez-Rodriguez told them she slammed the gas pedal to make a u-turn and ran over Jesus. Her family says she fled in a panic.
"She didn't even know that he was underneath the car," said her stepmother.
Neighbors who saw what happened said Martinez-Rodriguez fled crying and screaming.
She was later arrested at a nearby McDonald's. After her brother died in the hospital, Martinez-Rodriguez was charged with manslaughter and leaving the scene of an accident. She left police headquarters with her stepmother Tuesday night after posting $25,000 bail.
"She is very upset at the loss of her brother and to know she had a part in it," her stepmother said. "We have to just put one foot in front of the other and keep moving forward."