LOS ANGELES – The driver of a car involved in a possible road-rage-fueled crash in California was booked on suspicion of murder, as friends mourned the deaths of the pregnant teen and two others killed in the wreck.
Police said they believe two cars were traveling at up to 70 mph when one struck the other late Wednesday night. The Nissan Maxima driven by 19-year-old expectant mother Cristyn Cordova was hit. She lost control and slammed into a tree.
Officer Marjan Mobasser told MyFOXLA.com that after interviewing witnesses, detectives believe a road rage-spurred street race was the likely cause of the crash. She didn't have further details, saying the investigation was in its early stages.
"This is the grisly, gruesome result of a street race that started long before this collision," LAPD Lt. John Romero said at the scene.
Cordova was eight months pregnant, according to police. She died along with her sister and another passenger. Two other passengers — including the father of Cordova's unborn child — lost limbs and were critically injured.
Rostislav Shnayder, the 19-year-old driver of the other vehicle, was booked on suspicion of murder Thursday.
"It was a really ugly scene," said Eddie Espinosa, who rushed from his home to the wreckage. "Poor kids, they were crying ballistically. ... One kid lost his arm and the bone was sticking out."
Candles, flowers and tear-streaked faces of mourners filled the Eagle Rock, Calif., neighborhood Thursday where hours earlier the three teenagers died in the twisted, burning car wreckage.
The body of Cordova's sister, 16-year-old Toni Cordova, was found in the Nissan Maxima. A family friend, 19-year-old Jason Timothy Gomez Hernandez, was killed when he was thrown from the car.
Two other passengers also were flung from the vehicle. Carlos Alberto Campos, 19, and Cordova's brother, 15-year-old Andrew Cordova, were hospitalized Thursday in critical condition, one with a severed hand and leg, another with a leg severed at the hip, Officer April Harding said.
Campos was Cordova's boyfriend and father of her unborn child, authorities said.
Dozens of young people clung to each other Thursday afternoon as they placed candles and bouquets of backyard roses around the tree in the median of the wide boulevard.
"We had to pick up our class schedules at school today and everyone was really quiet and sad," said Cristiana Chavira, 17, a classmate of Cordova's at Eagle Rock High School and a friend since kindergarten.
Friends and neighbors also gathered in front of the Crodova's family home on a shady street a couple of miles away.
About a dozen teenagers wrote messages of grief and support for the survivors on pieces of poster board.
A longtime neighbor, Tom Krumal, said the Cordovas were "a good fun family" with kids who skateboarded on the street and gathered with relatives for barbecues on the Fourth of July and Christmas.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.